God Spoke To Me On Easter Morning

Last week I posted on Facebook that I was trying to decide when to attend Mass. Our church offered a Sunrise Mass at 7 a.m. followed by their regular 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. services.

I don’t know whether it’s common in all faiths for people to show up at church only twice a year on Christmas and Easter. I’ve joked that I would rather attend Mass every Sunday than face the overwhelming crowds of people on Easter or Christmas. Don’t misunderstand, I don’t wish they’d stay away!! I welcome them and pray that God speaks to their hearts and plants in them a desire to return to the church regularly in their own time. I just don’t do well in big crowds and the soothing calmness of Mass that speaks to my heart gets a little claustrophobic during the holidays.

To understand the following story, I need to tell you about my husband. Raised in the Methodist Church, he has always been supportive of my Catholic faith. Before we married, I told him that raising our children in the Catholic church was a necessity for me and he readily agreed. Early in our marriage, he attended Mass with me, though his faith was shaken after his mother’s death. It’s taken a long time, but recently he’s been attending Mass with us on occasion.

Despite being up rather late on Saturday, we set the alarm clock for 6 am so we could attend the 7 a.m. Sunrise Mass. When my husband woke me, we realized his clock was running behind and it was really 6:20 a.m.!

I mumbled something about being late, so we should go back to sleep, and we could just go to church at nine.

He said, “It’s too crowded. I won’t go at 9 a.m.”

I mumbled back, “Well, I’ll take the girls and go.”

He got out of bed.

Have you ever heard God speak to you? It’s often described as a stillness or a whisper or a stirring deep in your heart.

Easter Sunday God spoke to me.

It sounded like an air horn in my head and it went “BAHHHHHHHHH!!!! WRONG ANSWER.”

Without hesitation, I jumped out of bed and got dressed. Somehow, in the span of twenty-five minutes, my husband not only woke our two daughters, but also talked them into putting on their Easter dresses, convinced them that Easter baskets and egg hunts could wait, and herded us all out the door.

I saw a good number of Sunday 9 a.m. regulars at the 7 a.m. Mass that morning. We were treated to a special surprise: the Teen Choir sang traditional Latin music in beautiful four-part harmony. When they began the Communion song, I startled to realize a string quartet – not present at the beginning of Mass – had joined them. Even Fr. Bob noticed, because he jokingly asked me after Mass, “Was it just me or did a string quartet miraculously appear out of nowhere?”

Later that morning, after the girls received their Easter Baskets and hunted for brightly colored eggs, I asked my husband what made him get out of bed even though we were already so late that I didn’t think we would make it to church.

“I just realized how important it was to me” is all he could say.


Shelly Henley Kelly