Mouse was both excited and nervous going into the big day (as she mentions in the video). Some 33 kids received their First Communion at our parish this weekend, but only Mouse and her friend from down the street had their First Communion at the 8:30 Mass. Father thanked us for getting up early! Because they were the only two kids at that Mass, they got some special treatment -- like welcoming people and passing out programs before Mass. Our pastor addressed them by name several times during the homily (which was excellent, by the way, but also extemporaneous -- so I can't link to it). Then, after the homily, the director of faith formation called the girls by name and asked them to stand up. Our pastor then asked us parents whether the girls were ready to receive Communion, to which we answered, "They are!" And then he asked the girls whether they were ready . . . we'd coached Maria about speaking up really well for this part, and she didn't disappoint. Both her and her friend (who is the daughter of a liturgist trained at Notre Dame) responded "We are!" in clear, strong voices. Our pastor and some in the congregation smiled a little at their boldness (usually the kids whisper the answer).
Mouse and her friend also got to bring up the gifts; Jaybird and Bear got to bring up the gifts as well, accompanied by Starling and another adult friend (the godmother of Mouse's friend and the godmother of Jaybird). When they were asked what they wanted to bring up, they both immediately asked for the bread and wine.
Starling had bought Mouse a little chapel veil for the occasion, but she didn't wear it for most of the Mass. I think she didn't have it on when she went back to welcome people, and she never thought to put it on after that. But since she was so invested in it, I reminded her to put it on before she received the Eucharist. So she wore the veil for her First Communion -- if only briefly.
We had a nice brunch after Mass, after which Mouse opened her many presents:
a Catholic Youth Prayer Book
a subscription to Magnifikid
a statue of Mary
a precious moments First Communion statue
a little knit purse
And of course she had also received a nice bouquet of flowers from her uncle and aunt in Alabama.
After gifts, the family of the other girl walked over and we had cake and ice cream on our back deck.
At the end of the day, Mouse got to choose a prayer from her new prayer book for family prayer time; she chose, "A Great Day" -- because, she said, "that's what it was today!" And then she made a "chapel" out of a cardboard box and her veil (laid over the box) and her statues, and knelt down and prayed a decade of the rosary.
There were definitely some bumps in the road today that I'm leaving out, but on the whole, it was really a beautiful day for Mouse and for those who love her.