Monday, October 10


Sister Discipline

(Names changed to protect the Guilty)

Watching Brother Sun, Sister Moon was not a completely wasted opportunity. Catherine, our local Dominican-enthusiast freshman and I cooked up a Dominican version of one of the songs, the one they're singing as they're wandering through Assisi in the rain. It's the same tune as Concordet Laetitiae (you might know it as Orientis Partibus, yeah right), and I rather like what we've got so far. It's an infectious little ditty...

For our Sister Discipline
We give thanks!
For our Brother Penitence
We give thanks! We give thanks!

For our Sister Flagellance
We give thanks!
For our Brother Pain,
We give thanks! We give thanks!

For our Sister Cincture
We give thanks!
For our Brother Hair Shirt
We give thanks! We give thanks!

We sort of ran out of Pythonesque instruments of medieval penitence at this point (Catherine couldn't get Sister Chains-around-the-Waist to scan), but the tune caught and a bunch of us spent a good portion of this evening roaming around campus thanking God for Sisters Chastity, Charity, Fortitude, Piety and Obedience, as well as the less poetical Brothers Frostbite and Plague-and-Boils. (I was in a pestilential mood).


So we pour out of the back of the Basilica after Vespers and head down to see who's going to say the eight o'clock Rosary by the Grotto. Half of us are singing, somewhat off-key, a Gloria in Spanish, while Catherine and I are bellowing out thanks for Sister Discipline and Brother Penitence and really getting into it, and rather enjoying it. A freshman among us cries out, "You guys are awesome!" Then we stop dead and our jaws drop as we realize that there's a whole crowd of people down by the Grotto and they're about to start mass on the outdoor altar. And they're staring at us. There's shock, embarassment and laughter, and we creep, shamefacedly around the edge behind the screen of trees.

And then Mary Mazarello turns to me and says, half amused, half shamed, "This is us. This is sooo us."

I laugh and smile and say, "God bless us."

"Yeah, God bless us, everyone," she says, quoting Tiny Tim and we're far enough away from the worshippers to enjoy a good laugh at ourselves and hear Catherine quietly singing about Sister Discipline to herself as she brings up the rear. God blesses me through my friends, as crazy as we all might be.

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