Went to Peak’s Island this weekend. It’s an Island off the coast of Portland Maine, so you need to take a ferry. It’s about 5 hours from White Plains. It’s a vacation spot, with plenty of places for people to rent during the summer, and its easy to get fresh lobster for cheap.
The bride is the first person from any youth group to get hitched. She’s on the younger side – most of her friends are still single. I wasn’t making a play on them, in spite of the intriguing redhead who did improv comedy. Her husbands friends were all young and handsome. One was medicating himself through a divorce, flirting his way through the evening. He would ask me for permission to swear.
Although I love the family, I was a bit reticent to make the journey. I was exhausted. Taking a trip alone just heightens the awareness of solitude, and gives me considerable time to consider the bachelor life. But I had other incentives to visit: there was a Luce Scholars seminar in Cambridge, and a friend in West Roxbury I could visit. And upon my return I’d surprise another friend by attending his mass.
I celebrated the wedding with a colleague who is a “youth missioner.” I can’t imagine such a job. And it’s not because I hate kids. I love them. But I wasn’t a very good teen-ager. I didn’t have the cool, although I could negotiate the different cliques with some ease. Wes knows kids. He shepherds and directs. And he is very exuberant. “Wow!” he chants. “You are so cool. God absolutely loves you because you rock.” When he talks to kids he becomes animated and exuberant.
After the rehearsal, KP and DC, the bride and groom, offered communion to the family and friends. We used a very basic form of prayer over the bread and wine. It was a simple wine glass, a cabernet, and some pita bread.
I offered the remaining wine to the redhead, who’d already consumed. “Am I allowed to?” she asked. “Why?” I said it should get finished. She looked at me and smiled, shrugging her shoulder, looking at me as if I had told her something in Glaswegian. She kind of understood, but wasn’t sure if I was offering her a trinket, a prize, or my phone number.
So then I did what a priest normally does. I finished it myself. “Well, it just needs to be finished,” I said, looking away, and lifting the glass to my lips. It was a bit dry.