Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Maggie's First Communion and my birthday

This is a little late but my baby is growing up.  Maggie has come such a long way since she was born. The first several years were full of doctors appointments, medical tests and surgeries that I never thought we'd get to the point we are today.  Two more major surgeries later and my baby girl has made her First Holy Communion.  

The week before our church hosts a First Communion Retreat for the kids. It's a special, fun time for them to go over things they've learned and to learn more new things about the wonderful sacrament that is the Eucharist.  They get to sing songs, play games, and listen to the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000. At the end they got to celebrate with pizza, cake and other snack foods.  It was a great time had by all.  I've been through it three times ( my first two took their First Holy Communion at the same time so I did this three instead of four times). 
  Getting together. Since we always have such a small amount of kids in our Religous Ed group we combine with another Parish. 
 Mrs. S has done this for many years. I'm not sure on the exact amount of years but she now has this down as an art.  The kids love it and it makes this special day to look forward to even more special.
                               The kids listening to the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000 with fish and bread.
                                                      Mrs. S's version of the 5,000
Then there is craft time. The kids get to make a rosary box to hold onto their rosaries. And they also made a cross  and put a short sentence on what First Communion meant to them. I will say Oriental Trading has gotten a lot better with putting the sticky stuff on the back of the pieces. Back in the day we had to use glue and it was always a bit of a messy project, but the kids had fun anyways. 

                             Our little Communion Princess. Maggie looked so beautiful in her dress. 
                                        Maggie and Daddy. Yes, it was a little windy that morning but the day was just beautiful. We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day. It worked perfectly because we had our after party out on our deck. 
                                                           Marilyn and Maggie. 
                                         Mommy and Maggie, Well, the sun got in her eyes.
                    The altar was decorated beautifully for such a beautiful day. The picture really didn't do                             it any justice. It was actually very breath taking in person. 
                        My three older girls were so excited that they got to serve for their little sister's                               First  Communion. 
                               Maggie walking down the aisle. Her veil kept wanting to slip off her head. 
                                    Marilyn, Katie and Hannah up on the altar with Father as he was saying Communion. The one thing I can brag a bit here is that my girls do exactly what they are supposed to do when they are serving. Far to many times I see kids NOT doing what they are supposed to be doing. Like playing around with their hands, not participating in the responses , or just playing around. Father, our Deacon and even the parishioners always appreciate when my girls serve. They take it very seriously.   

I will say I did not get a picture of Maggie taking Communion. Reason being because I thought my husband had the camera and here it had slipped in the back part of our pew and I didn't know it until my husband came back. But I'll give you a play by play here. 
Daddy was Eucharistic minister that day. He was fortunate to have had the pleasure of giving Maggie the Precious Blood of our Lord. He didn't know he was going to do that at the very last moment when the Deacon stepped back and handed him the cup.   Maggie did a wonderful job as well as the rest of the kids. 
                             After Communion was all finished the First Communion kids went up for Mary's May Crowing. 
                                          Our small little group. It's been kind of sad. In the past four years the amount of children in our church has been on a serious decline. Four years ago when my two oldest had their first communion we had 18 children. Though compared to many churches, which is still small, we've just had a a large decline in the amount of children we've had for Relgious Education. Our church has been averaging between 5-7 children for first communion since. I expect the numbers to continue to go down as people in our country have just lost their way.
Maggie, Father Hoffman, and as we so lovingly call him, Deacon Bill :) 
 Our after party cake. Okay so this sorry looking cake was our cake. There is such a long story to this it's almost not funny. This ended up being the second cake I had to bake because the first one didn't take, then for some reason the frosting just wasn't working like I had wanted it to. In the end we were lucky we had the cake at all. 
 Setting up for the after party. It was so nice to have so many people for Maggie's party. Not to mention what made this day all the more special was that it was my birthday too!  It was a day I'll never forget. 
             The weather outside was just beautiful. It wasn't to hot or to cold. It was JUST right.  
                        So much so that we could all enjoy a little Vitamin D that we are so all lacking up                                here  in the North.
                                                         Maggie enjoying the company. 
                                                 Maggie opening up her gifts. She got many beautiful gifts, from a                                     Picture Bible to a beautiful rosary made by one of our parishioners. 
Finishing up opening the gifts. Even Father Hoffman made an appearance. He's the guy in black sitting in the shade. I didn't blame him. LOL 

So there you have it. It was such a perfect day for such a beautiful little girl. We couldn't have asked for anything more. It was a great way to spend my birthday. With cake, friends and family. 

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