More from Jay and Candy on their Diaconate journey
December 1, 2012. It was our week to prepare and conduct the prayer service. It is amazing how much work you can put into an activity that is going to last a short 15 minutes! As we said in a previous Blog, our service was titled “The Gift of Prayer”.
Prior to the service, we e-mailed all of our classmates and instructors and asked them to consider something that they would like someone journeying with them to pray for. When our fellow aspirants arrived at class that day, they were given a yellow box that contained a colored bow, with a tag with a picture of peacock on one side and “The Gift of Prayer” on the other. There was also a piece of paper with a stamp of a peacock feather on it. They were asked to write their intention on the piece of paper, place it in the box, attach the bow to the top of the box, and remember the color of their bow. They then brought the completed gift up and place it on a table next to our environment table.
The environment table contains symbols that are meaningful to us as well as relate to the prayer service. Our table had an Advent Wreath with evergreen and peacock feathers. There was a rosary that Jay has had since high school as well as; the Bible that Candy received when she went through the Right of Acceptance in RCIA, a candle that is used when we take communion to the sick, a volume of the Divine Office that Jay has had since he was in college and a crystal cross that was given to us by our friends who suggested that we consider the Diaconate.
As a side note, when we first met as a group (all the couples who had been accepted to the Aspirancy for Deacon Formation), at the Mary & Joseph Retreat House in Palos Verdes there were a number of peacocks, peahens, and their broods. During the three day retreat, a number of our classmates found peacock feathers. Since that retreat, the peacock feather has been an unofficial symbol of our class. [Interestingly, the peacock has long been a symbol of resurrection and immortality and is often used in Christian iconography]
The service began with a prayer and then everyone sat down and listened to “To you O Lord, I lift up my soul” (the version performed by the Holy Family youth choir). The reader proclaimed Matthew 6:5-8. This is where Jesus instructed His followers how to pray. After the reading, Jay provided a reflection about how prayer is a gift from God that we in turn can give to others.
After the environment table explanation, each person was asked to come forward and pick up one gift box; a gift box that did not have the color of the bow that they had, to insure they did not get their own intention. They were instructed to read the intention and then place it back in the box, we asked all to take the box home and place it a sacred place and remember to pray at least once a day for that intention. Some made the decision not to open their individual box, but to pray for all the intentions given, lifting up their prayers for all those intentions which God hears and answers. As they came forward, the song “Shout to the Lord” was played.
We then prayed for specific intentions alternating between men and women, joined hands (Holy Family style) and sang the Lord’s Prayer. Candy then said a closing prayer and Deacon Chris gave us all a blessing.
Our next class will be held on December 19th in Mission Hills and we will have our first quiz.
If you are interested in becoming a Deacon Couple, you are invited to attend anpresented by the Office of Diaconate Formation. Here you can meet the formation staff and learn more about the formation program.
Sunday, January 20, 2013 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at St. John Chrysostom Parish, 546 E. Florence Ave, Inglewood, 90301
Sunday, April 14, 2013 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at St. Maximilian Kolbe, 5801 Kanan Rd. Westlake Village, 91362
If you have any questions about the Diaconate, please ask us or send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. We greatly appreciate your prayers and support and will continue to keep you informed of our journey.
Candy & Jay Krueger,
Aspirancy Year, Deacon Couple Formation,
Holy Family Parish, South Pasadena