Sunday, July 29, 2007

Singing in the Rain

The weather held for the weekly protest at St. Patrick's Cathedral. Under cloudy skies, we then assembled in front of Our Lady of Vilnius. Ramute updated the faithful on recent business, then the skies opened. We prayed to Our Lady then partook of a light repast huddled under umbrellas and pressed into entryways. Laima M. had baked a prosciutto bread and brought a coffee cake. Rita brought a strong Lithuanian elixir of "swamp herbs" to share. Most of the group repaired to Starbuck's for postprandial coffee and further discussion.

One man, a sturdy white-haired man with pale blue eyes, stood alone at the top of stairs, partly sheltered by the eave. He held the corner of the Lithuanian flag, displaying it fully for the motorists creeping toward the mouth of the Holland Tunnel. I joined him, then Aligmantas came up, then Mindaugus and finally Rita. Rita stood with one eye closed against the rain, smiling her Giulietta Massina smile. She suggested that we sing "Marija, Marija" in the rain. And we did. We sang at the top of the steps and the top of our lungs as the rain poured down between our umbrellas, soaked our clothes and dripped off our elbows.

It was a fine and inspired moment. One of many at Our Lady of Vilnius.

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