Frankincense: That’s the incense used at most Catholic churches when they are celebrating major feasts, it’s a smell that’s been familiar to me since early childhood, and one I always associate with the presence of the Bishop at a mass.
Last Palm Sunday (Passion Sunday), As I was avoiding the rain, and ducking under tents, I happened to stand right next to the altar server who was tending the Thurible with the coals and the incense, as the rain kept me cornered for the moment I took a few quick snaps 🙂
Click on the image to see it better in the Gallery 🙂
I can’t speak for others, I can only speak for myself, and I want to mention how I remember someone who died this morning. To me she was always Ma Cheong, not Mrs. Cheong, or Aunty Martha, but Ma Cheong.
For as long as I’ve known her in our parish community at the Cathedral, she has been a mother to many, her home (not her house) was always filled with young people, her children. Whether they were her own flesh and blood, adopted, fostered, or just happen to be there as friends, church member or passing through, she treated all the same.
Although she may never be immortalized in stone, she will live on in those she was a mother to, her ideals, her thoughts, her wisdom will shine through those that she imparted them to. To all of her children (and there are many of us who counted ourselves among them) I extend my condolences.
Like the statue of Our Lady that survived the fire which destroyed the original cathedral and now stands proudly at the Entrance to the current cathedral, I say to you her children and anyone who has known her, stand proud to have known and to have been loved by Ma Cheong.
Please Click on the Image to see it larger in the Gallery.
Whilst in Sint Maarten, I went to church at a small Catholic church not too far from where we were staying, and when I say “not too far” I mean a couple of minutes walk. The church was called the Mary, Star of the Sea, Catholic Church. On a separate occasion, I walked over to photograph it from the roadside, and although I have already posted and uploaded to my site, at least one photograph of it, I had reserved one for later processing.
The name of the church had captivated me, I assumed that its location was partially responsible. I couldn’t remember seeing a particular effigy bearing the name during my growing years, but I do remember the phrase “Mary, Star of the Sea” being part of hymns and litanies, and probably a prayer. I was surprised to learn that the Latin was Stella Maris, which happened to be the name of the Primary School I went to as a child. It is strange that many of us go to schools and seldom, if ever, question the origins of the name of the school.
Like this church, the school I attended was located on a coastal area, Mary, Star of the Sea, is the patroness of seafarers. Under this title she was believed to intercede as a guide and protector of those on the seas either as travelers or workers.
On this photo I did something unusual (for me) I used an orange filter for a special effect and did a high structure monochrome, the original was nice enough in colour, but I thought it warranted a bit more “umph” for impact. I hope you like it.