My mother-in-law Marie was a wonderful woman. She had many gifts and used them for the good of her family and the Church. She had a heart of gold, and she loved her husband, children and grandchildren without counting the cost. ralph-and-marie-with-ian She was good to me and welcomed me into the family as one of her own. She loved God and didn’t care who knew it. I used to be amazed at how she could strike up a conversation with a total stranger and end up talking about God.

One of the gifts which Marie had and used generously, was her ability as a seamstress. Not only did she make clothes for countless people, but she also made countless altar linens, tabernacle veils, banners (when they were the new church decoration), albs, amices, etc. Anything the local Catholic Church needed, she provided. After Vatican II when the altars were no longer arranged as they had been and the priests stopped wearing amices, etc., she rescued many of those items before they were thrown into the trash. I ended up with a very heavy bag of altar linens and have tried over the years to find a church that could use them. I had no luck until recently. We have an FSSP parish in our town, and finally these beautiful linens are once again being used. In this picture, the frontal on the altar was hand crocheted with thread in a cross and grape motif. The crochet was done by my husband’s grandmother, and his mother put the lace onto the linen. The work is exquisite, and was lovingly done. There was so much beautiful handwork on the various pieces I found in that bag, all done by my mother-in-law. I know she is smiling if she can see these things being used after over 40 years in a plastic bag.hpim21171

Marie died 9 years ago today.  I was privileged to hold her hand as she crossed to the other side.

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and may perpetual light shine upon her.

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