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Life is tough. Nuns are tougher.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Saint poems

The saintly poetry contest is on! Our readers have offered us the Mother Cabrini prayer to fix cars:
"Mother Cabrini,
Mother Cabrini,
come down from your cloud
and fix my machini!"

It sounds a little off kilter and demanding to me, but there you are. The meter doesn't sound right to me somehow.

"Mother Cabrini,
put down your martini,
come down from your cloud

and fix my machini! "

Works a little better for me, but clearly not perfect.

There is also a Mother Cabrini prayer for parking cars:

"Mother Cabrini,
stop eating linguini,
please find a spot
for my little machini."

I made up the linguini part.

This begs the question, why Mother Cabrini, of all people?

To start with, she was remarkably well traveled. She established major hospitals in New York, Chicago and Seattle as well as schools and orphanages all over the world.

She certainly had the tenacity of a car salesman.

I think, though, that her helpful hand with car situations has to do with the fact that one famous story about her involves a ride in a fancy car. It seems she had a dream of a house on top of a hill. It was so wonderful she wanted to put an orphanage up there.

Can I just stop and say, how many people would see a great house on the top of a hill, in a dream or otherwise, and think "orphanage"? Really, not many. Not Aaron Spelling, or Mel Gibson or Nancy Reagan, not Michael Jordan, not Johnny or Ed...really...not many.

So the next day Mother Cabrini and some of her sisters were walking along and Mother Cabrini flagged down a chauffeur driven limosine for a ride. The limo passenger, a rich lady, was happy to give the sisters a lift. During the ride Mother Cabrini spoke about the house on the hill in her dream. When they got to the convent the lady asked for a glass of water. She said this:

"Mother Cabrini, that house you dreamed of is mine, I own it. I never thought of parting with it, but if I may be allowed to enter your Holy House for a moment and receive a glass of water in the name of the Lord, your little orphans shall have their home with my blessing."

She was a very wordy rich woman. Anyhow that's how Mother Cabrini got her orphanage is Seattle. Apparently Mother Cabrini is happy to help you get where you're going, too.

But hold your horses! There is another parking saint! The Little Flower offered to continue helping in her little way from heaven.

"Little Flower, Little Flower, send me some of your parking power."

These poems all seem to have the 'say the name of the saint twice' thing in common. I guess you want to make sure you get their attention.

You could try, "Little Flower, don't be dour" or "Little Flower, erase my glower..."

I can't imagine what the Little Flower, who never went anywhere in her life, never rode in a car and lived in a cloister has to do with parking. Unless you figure that once she got into the convent she was pretty much parked there. It doesn't really fly for me.

Neither Mother Cabrini nor the Little Flower are incorrupt, by the way. But the Little Flower did go on a world tour a few years back, finally traveling all over the world the way she would have liked, being a missionary. Sigh.


CMinor said...

Well, I don't know what our Blessed Mother has to do with parking, but since nobody else has mentioned it I might as well submit:
Hail, Mary, full of grace,
Help me find a parking space.

Any thoughts on this, Sister?

Louis said...

How about going to the very top:
Loving Creator, Father of all,
I need a parking place,
at the mall.

Sister Mary Martha said...

Louis, how Protestant of you.

Alexa said...

Boniface, Boniface, find me a parking space?

Hobbs said...

Boniface, Boniface is the prayer that I use.

Sister Mary Martha said...

In my home town we have a St. Boniface parish and everyone pronounces his name Bon-a-fuss.

So that rhyme doesn't work for me. Bonifuss,Bonifuss, please find me a parking spuss.

Not happening.

Louis said...

Sister Mary Martha,
I plead guilty...sort of. For the first 20 years of my life I was a Methodist.

Soapy said...

Well if Boniface is pronounced Bon a fuss then that sort of works for me on cold and/or snowy days waiting for the bus.

Bon a fuss, Bon a fuss bring me a bus :)

I'll have to remember that the next time I'm shivering at the bus stop.

cattiekit said...

Aw, c'mon, soapy. :>D

How about "Boni-fuss, Boni-fuss,
Hurry up and send a bus."

At least that kind of scans. :>}

Sister Mary Martha said...

I wonder what Saint Boniface has to do with cars and parking.

Laura The Crazy Mama said...

Dominic, Dominic
help me to teach
my (sometimes) naughty children
and not just to preach.

Their dad tells them to listen
to their mom without fail
but they get "mom deafness"
whenever I rail.

Ken said...

Long have I gone to Mother Cabrini for parking purposes, and lately she's even become my go-to friend for just about everything. I think it's because I'm from Seattle, went to high school right next to Cabrini Hospital, and worshipped at St. James Cathedral, where she too worshipped. I've even made pilgrimages to her relics in NYC, as well as her shrine & orphanage outside of Golden, CO. My non-Catholic wife even has a Mother Cabrini medal hanging in her mini-van, because she too believes in Mother Cabrini's help.

The parking miracle of all parking miracles came in Seattle, when I was on tour with my fellow Dominican novices, and we went down to the Pike Place Market for a look-see. I offered the prayer, "Mother Cabrini, park our machini (for free!)", and literally that very moment, a parking space opened up right in the heart of the Market - my brothers were stunned, I was overjoyed, and it has been a touchstone moment ever since. Mother Cabrini is awesome!

Jamie said...

I graduated from Cabrini College. I love the Cabrini poems- made me smile!

I'll have to think of a clever one to add.