Tuesday, May 18, 2010

May Crowning!

On May 8, we had our parish May Crowning.

Please indulge me while I take my notes here for next year.

The weather was windy and chilly. We might have had more people come had it been sunny. Still, I think there were probably about 100 people there. We did it right after the 9:00 Mass on Saturday. I purchased probably 160 or more flowers for the procession. 100 probably would have been enough. Some people did bring flowers from home as we had suggested in the bulletin announcement.

We distributed flowers to those who needed them in the back, by the baptismal font. When people had their flowers they lined up in the center aisle. Three people were helping to pass out the flowers and that seemed a good number.

An acolyte led the processions with a crucifix followed by two candle bearers. They stood in front at the center aisle. Two banner carriers were behind them.

Deacon Dan and Deacon Lou came in from the side aisle and then stopped in the center to say the opening prayers. The crown carrier (a First Communicant girl) the First Communicant boy, and the Crowner (Confirmand girl) were sitting in the front row. They came forward with the crown on a pillow for the crown to be blessed. They then stepped to the side to let the procession begin. These three then brought up the end of the procession and Deacons Dan and Lou followed at the end.

We started singing several verses of Immaculate Mary and then sang Bring Flowers of the Rarest (the traditional may Crowning song). After she was crowned we said the Litany of Mary and concluded with Hail Holy Queen.

Several women assisted with the placing of the flowers in the vases which had been set out and filled with water the night before. Seemed to go well.

We crowned the large statue of the Blessed Mother which stands on a tall pedestal in our church. We used a metal portable stairway which Angie H. (mother of the crowner) did a fabulous job decorating with blue satin and white tulle.

We again ordered the crown from a florist in Hawaii, graciously arranged by Mary O. Is this not a gorgeous crown?

It's actually what is called a hakulei and is strung on a cord like a lei, only smaller. The flowers were exquisite and I love the way it lays so nicely on her head. Half the cost was for the Fed Ex shipping. But she is so worth it! The crowner went to near the top of the steps. The First Communicant boy went up a few steps. The crown carrier then lifted the pillow for Luke to take the crown and hand to the Confirmand who placed it on Mary's head as we sang the words, "Oh Mary we crown thee with blossoms today."

We had refreshments in the JPII room afterwards, planned by Maria F. who did a fabulous job. Cheese and crackers, brownies, cookies, lemonade, coffee, and tea. Lisa M. donated a beautiful full sheet cake all decorated for Our Lady. She also brought in her own lovely large statue of the Blessed Mother complete with real eyelashes. Lisa placed this statue on the table in the narthex with the programs and then moved it afterwards to grace us in the room with the refreshments.

The participants stayed for some time, having refreshments. Kids gathered together in little circles sitting on the floor. There was an occasional crushed cookie and a plant that was knocked over spilling a little soil on the floor. Why do I mention this? Because it warmed my heart that this was a family-friendly event and I felt it was just as our Blessed Mother would want it.

We had lots of help afterwards cleaning up (Dell, Mike, Ken, Maria, Lisa, and some of our kids) We vacuumed, etc.

It all went quite smoothly. Seemed to be a lot of spiritual warfare beforehand, but the crowning itself was without glitch, I thought. At the moment Hail Holy Queen ended the power went out in the church. I mean exactly at the moment it ended. It felt like some little powerless demon just wanted to stick his tongue out, not having been able to spoil any of our efforts to honor the Queen. It came back on within minutes. teehee.

I may write more about the planning in another post. Mary, Queen of Peace, we love you. Please help us always to "do whatever He tells us," as you always did.


Suzanne said...

This is so lovely. You all are so dedicated to doing this so well, because you know that our Lady is very much alive and spiritually with you even though this is but a lovely statue..she, yes, she is still all around because He allows her to be, I am sure! :) Lovely!

Maman A Droit said...

What a sweet tradition! I just joined the Church through RCIA in 08, so I haven't heard of all the neat Catholic traditions that exist yet! I don't think my parish does May crowning.

Maryellen said...

Rosemary, what a lovely detailed word-picture of the May crowning. I haven't seen one for years, and I love the old hymn "Bring Flowers of the rarest...." which I remember from childhood on.

The photos are great of a loving task well-done. Thanks.

ukok said...

The crown is so beautiful!