Amy & Penni's Excellent Adventure...

...or our whirlwind trip to Cambridge, Massachusetts to see our dear friend Mark Mossa be ordained to the Diaconate.

How cool. Where to start?

I drove to Amy's after working my 12-hour shift on Friday and stayed overnight with her amazing, warm, and gracious family. I was able to worm my way into her 1 year-old's heart have her baby girl warm up to me and rock her to sleep (which was worth the drive, in and of itself...) and loved having deep conversations with her boys who so smartly spelled their names and allowed me to sleep on the lower bunk on their Bob the Builder sheets (it was a "surprise" for me! how wonderful!!) And after being told by my hostess that she was not much of a "morning person," she woke me up at 3:55 a.m., fully dressed, and told me she was "unable to sleep and the bathroom's all yours, and I'll be downstairs and ......" argh!! I thought you said you were quiet in the mornings??

The drive was great, save for the first three hours in the dark and fog, but conversationally we never really stopped talking. Amy was the perfect co-pilot.

We made it to Cambridge with time to spare and went to a local eatery for a small bite before the ceremony started...I am a liturgy-loving Catholic. I know all Masses cannot be "mountaintop" experiences, but man, if they could, you'd never hear another complaint or angsty comment from me about being Catholic. The music was sublime and the ceremony itself was wonderful and filled with moments of grace and love. I sat there, tear-filled and happy for Mark and the other men who were receiving their Sacrament and felt like an honored guest to be able to be present for this.

Meeting Mark was like meeting a brother -- he exuded joy -- and while he had a large family and friends to visit with, he was a gracious host and spent more time with us than I thought would be possible due to his time constraints. His family was also warm and wonderful and we found it difficult to leave, aside from the fact I was facing about 6 hours of drive time and we needed to get going.

I am a blessed person for having been able to take this trip, more profoundly blessed to have Amy as my friend, and am incredibly thankful to Mark for having invited me in the first place. I am thinking he was the only Deacon to have two "Jersey girl blogger friends" be able to join him in his celebration. Can't say much more than that :)

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