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Discover Spiritual Truths in Costa Rica

February 1st, 2008

Someone told me spiritual truths all stem from the same root. Every few months, I get invited to a very typical, Costa Rican family event. Kids birthdays go like this: give a gift; have a cup of coffee; eat rice and chicken with macaroni topped with potato chips all on a plastic plate handed to you by the host or the person in charge of the kitchen that day (usually a tia -aunt); sing happy birthday; eat cake; bash pinata; more coffee; ice cream cone; and then mill about until it feels socially acceptable to leave.

This event went as usual except for the blessing of the birthday child, her mother, and their home. A woman took out her rosary, a prayer book, and older ladies gathered in a U around a small nativity set with a candle burning in the middle. In my earlier days I would have scoffed and rolled my eyes at the whole thing. Life sat me down and taught me a thing or two. I’ve mellowed. Now I love listening to the rosary. I can watch the mouths of the women race over the prayers in harmony. I can laugh because after many years, I can still whip out a quick Hail Mary with the best of them.

It is such a peaceful thing to pray. No matter the language or religion. It is a moment of thinking about unity, love, forgiveness, and others. Upon finishing, the ladies were served up treats by our newly blessed mom and her three-year old daughter. My daughter came up to me and asked for more candy. My son woke up from his nap, and little ladies who’d come to pray all left for home, holding a piece of birthday cake in their hand and a rosary in the other.


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