Being On The A-Team

Two nights ago, I had the privilege of singing at a Mass in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe, on the feast of St. Louis de Montfort. St. Louis is the man who enlightened the rest of the Church with a special means of giving themselves to Jesus through Mary His Mother. This consecration has been an important part of my coming back to Christ, and it’s the foundation for a group at the Shrine where I am a member. And, to boot, the Missionary Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe was there as well. So it’s a great privilege for me to be able to sing at the Mass.

Now, I am an OK singer, but certainly not the type you’d put leading the singing in church. I got to sing because the usual musician is out of town and the music director could not make it. I was the last-minute substitute: Choice C.

But as it turned out, I was not alone. There was a nineteen-year-old woman singing with me, Sandy. She was so very kind and humble, she had the most beautiful voice, played the guitar, and, well, she even looked a lot like Our Lady of Guadalupe. (Not to mention that Our Lady was a teenager when she was pregnant with her Son, as she is as Our Lady of Guadalupe.)

Now, my singing voice alone is boring, but not only that, I have gasps, places where I forget to breathe. My timing is off, I sing way too low most of the time, and my volume is all over the place. I sing like a choice C singer. Hack.

I told her, “You have a great voice. You should be doing all the singing, you can do the solos.” She said, “No, we are a team. We’ll sing together.” So, we sang together for the Mass.

And the most amazing thing happened. She sang and played the guitar with me, and by doing that, everything changed. She smoothed out all the rough edges, adapted for the volume, and her higher voice balanced my drone. And even more, she could harmonize at the drop of a hat. Her harmonizing turned every ordinary song into an extraordinary song.

With her guitar playing and singing, we sounded like Choice A. People were even weeping! She got all the accolades of course, and what did I get? I got to sing with her. I would have been a disaster alone, but instead, with her, I got to be a part of the A team.

In his writings revealing the special means of consecration to Jesus through Mary, St. Louis de Montfort wrote that we need this means because, from God’s standard, everything we do is like Choice C: it’s hack. He wrote that we should live life always with Mary so that “she may purify it, sanctify it, embellish it, and thus render it worthy of God.” (The Secret of Mary, No. 37)

Mary gives us the Sacred Humanity of Jesus. When we live life with Jesus’ Humanity, when we live life with Mary, she smoothes out all the rough edges. She adjusts for our faults and weaknesses and fills them in. And not only that, she embellishes our life with a harmonizing that makes every ordinary thing extraordinary. It becomes worthy of God Himself. It becomes the Life of her Son.

We get to live with her, and our life goes from Choice C to Choice A.

We get to be a part of the A team.

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3 thoughts on “Being On The A-Team

  1. Jerome and Carol, I wonder if you both have also noticed a certain “ease” with which things get accomplished (in general), since consecration to Mary. I know I have, in so many areas that I couldn’t even begin to say. This is a beautiful example, Jerome.

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