Divine Design

09-10-2017Pastor LetterParishioner Lois Woodrow

I was 18 years old and my husband was 19 when my uncle, a parish priest in Michigan, married us. Naturally, our parents warned us that we were too young and should wait a few years to marry, however, we knew we were in love, so the wedding went ahead as scheduled. About 24 years later, my dear husband fell ill and was given six months to live. He passed away at the early age of 42. We had just celebrated our 24th wedding anniversary. My whole world turned upside down. I was lost, so I asked God for help. After some reflection and prayer I came to realize why we married so young.

AND SO IT WAS… God's Plan.

After my husband's death, I decided to move closer to my family. I was searching for a home with my real-estate agent and he approached a beautiful house. I wondered why he stopped; there wasn't a For Sale sign on the property. He said, "It's too bad you weren't looking for a house one year ago, because this one was for sale. The homeowners changed their minds and took it off the market." I asked him politely if he could reach out to the owners and he replied, "Of course." A meeting was set up and I was able to see the entirety of the lovely home. I purchased it immediately. A couple of months after I moved in, my next-door neighbor invited me to a party at their house. I accepted the offer and it was there that I met my future second husband. We marriedwithin the year.

AND SO IT WAS… God's Plan.

My new husband was not a Catholic and so my prayers for the next 30 some years was for the Holy Spirit to enlighten him and bring him into the Church. Through the years, he would occasionally attend Mass with me, but I never "pushed" the Church on him, knowing that he must have the desire to learn more about the faith. One day, I mentioned to him that Corpus Christi was going to start RCIA instruction classes. I eagerly asked if he'd be interested in attending. He agreed and went through the program, proudly becoming a Catholic at the Easter Vigil in2009.

AND SO IT WAS… God's Plan.

My husband could draw anything, a God given talent. I had always wanted to paint a picture of Our Lord and the Blessed Virgin. So we teamed up; Bob drew with pencil and I painted using oils. The prayer card of the Sacred Heart of Jesus that my husband used as a guide, showed a drop of blood dripping from His Sacred Heart, but Bob did not include the drop of blood in his drawing. When I began painting the picture of Jesus, I noticed that drop of blood was not in the picture and couldn't decide if I should paint it in or leave it out. In the meantime, I had the pictures framed and hung them side-by-side in my family room, still undecided about the drop of blood. The next day my sister stopped by for a visit, we were sitting at the kitchen table talking when I noticed a spot of blood on the front of her white slacks. I pointed that out to her and she was just as surprised because she put them on a few hours earlier and they were clean. We lifted up the pant leg to see if she had cut herself or if there was any blood in that area. There was neither. The spot of blood on her pants was fresh; bright red and slightly damp. We were perplexed, and I told her I would wash the blood off her slacks, but first I wanted her to see the paintings of Jesus and Mary. As we stood there looking and commenting on the pictures, I told her about my problem. I then said, "Come on, I'd better get that blood off your slacks before it dries." I grabbed a damp cloth from the kitchen and when I went to clean it, the spot of blood was gone! My dilemmawas solved.

AND SO IT WAS… God's plan.

A few months later, my dear husband of 38 years passed away in his sleep. The Police and Fire Department responded to my call and while they were there, one of the firefighters noticed the paintings of Jesus and Mary and asked about them. When I mentioned that my husband had drawn them and that these were his last works, the fireman suggested taking them to the Church and placing them in the Sanctuary the day of the funeral. With permission from Father Chad, the Sacred Heart of Jesus as well as the Blessed Virgin Mary rested on easels, standing on both sides of Bob's casket. Imagine that; this Catholic of not quite five years was having this beautiful Mass of the Resurrection, offered for him and celebrated by Father Chad, with Jesus on one side and Mary on the other.

AND SO IT WAS… God's Plan.

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