There are two types of folks. Criers and non-criers. You could break that down even further. The closet criers and the open criers, those who cry at everything and those who cry at anything dealing with injustice. Coke commercial criers. Olympic criers. Movie criers.
As my crying evolves, as do I, I would say I am a crier at what moves me. That can be movies, commercials, anything sports related, God related, music related. Basically anything life related.
This weekend our son made his First Holy Communion. If you aren’t familiar with this event, it is one of the sacraments of the Catholic Church
We belong to a church with a deaf community and one of the three boys receiving this sacrament belongs to this community. As the mass is signed, often the youth of our parish sign songs during special occasions. With Holy Communion being a very special occasion, the boys got to sign a song during mass. During practice on Saturday, as they signed the song, Come to Our Feast, I told their leader, I’m going to be crying up a storm tomorrow.
This doesn’t make everyone comfortable. Tears for some represent weakness, lack of control, a problem.
When I am moved emotionally, I can’t keep the tears from coming, nor do I want to, especially when they are tears of joy.
Church is a place where I often have welled up eyes and it usually has to do with the music, rarely is there a Coke commercial played at church.
On Sunday, during Holy Communion Mass each boy walked down the aisle separately, carrying the gifts to the altar. Our son carried the wine. I know not everyone, but some think of this as the blood of Christ. So kind of a big deal. He stood at the back of the church waiting for his signal to walk down the aisle. As he processed to the song, Come to Our Feast, beaming proudly, all emotions took over my body. Joy. Pride. Love. Enthusiasm. And more Love. And of course the way I emote best is through tears. Beaming back at him as he passed our pew to the altar my entire face was wet. He beamed back. He knows his mama and he knows her tears. He knows they were tears of joy. Tears of love. And nothing could hold them back, nor did I want them to.
Tears are Holy energy moving through us and I don’t ever want to block, stuff, or ignore that.
The combination of hearing the invitation of the words, Come to our feast, come to our feast, the young and the old, the frightened the bold, the greatest and the least…, seeing my son’s smile, knowing how much he loves God, all of this was exploding with joy inside of me and the only way for those emotions to be expressed were through my tears. Holy. Loving. Joyful tears. Nothing could stop it. Nor did I want them to.
I wear my tears proudly and I hope you do too. And if you are a closet crier, you have my permission to do that proudly as well. Just let ‘em flow when necessary. And allow your tears to bathe you, nourish you, fill you, heal you, express you. Now that is a Holy Feast.