|Flowers from a Friend: Miniature Roses and Gardenias|
I will be hosting the monthly prayer gathering this Saturday. I have already posted about it and last year's preparations for it here and here.
As mentioned previously, it is a gathering of members of my mother's family and long-time family friends, all of whom are Catholic, to recite the Rosary. My mother and I, being Buddhists, didn't attend these rosary gatherings. However, after one of my aunts (my mother's younger sister) passed away and her husband and daughter held rosary gathering on the anniversaries of her death, we attended those rosaries in memory of my aunt.
Over the years, we were invited to attend the rosary gatherings held by others, as well, and we'd attend because they were family and friends. But I didn't become a regular member of the group until after my daughter was born. I was going through a pretty rough period in my life at the time due to the break up of my marriage and felt the need for prayer and community. Eventually, after attending the prayer gatherings at the homes of almost all the other members in the group, I felt the need to reciprocate their hospitality and offered to host a rosary gathering at my home. That was about 22 years ago and I have continued to host the prayer gathering at my home, once a year. I used to host it in November, but, after my mother's death, I've tried to host it in October, since her birthday was in October. The prayers are led by a friend who is one of the original founders of the group. I don't actually recite the rosary, myself, although I know all the words. I sit in silence and meditate. I continue to attend the gatherings because I enjoy the fellowship.
The prayers are usually followed by a meal, although, occasionally, especially if someone is late in attending for some reason (some of us have a fairly long drive, depending on where that month's gathering is held and how much traffic is encountered), the meal might take place before the prayers are said.
This year's prayer gathering will be held on Saturday night. I have invited all the usual participants and a few others who are no longer regular members. Altogether, approximately 30 people. One of my cousins and another friend have already told me that they will not be able to attend as they have prior engagements. Most probably 5 others won't attend, although they haven't said so, as they no longer participate on a regular basis. I am catering for approximately 20 people, although there might be as few as 15 who actually show up. It doesn't matter - I'd rather have leftovers than run short.
Rosary dinner menu:
- spicy garbanzo beans
- cocktail sausages and tomato chutney
- Meatball curry (using purchased frozen meatballs)
- Honey Sesame chicken (daughter will make)
- Fish curry (a friend will make)
- Green beans curry (a friend will make)
- Salad of halved hard boiled eggs served on a bed of sliced tomato, cucumber, red onions, and green chilies
- Cashew curry
- Lentil curry?
- Fresh fruits platter
- Cake or pie (a friend will bring)
- Flan or a gelatin dessert
Drinks: Sodas, sparkling apple cider, sparkling grape juice, wine, beer, etc.
Two of my cousins asked what I'd like them to bring and I suggested a bottle of wine as I don't drink anything alcoholic and I never know what to buy other than ginger wine which seems popular with the aunts. :)
To Do List:
- Buy paper plates and napkins, plastic cups, etc. - DONE
- Make the menu - DONE
- Make the grocery list
- Shop for groceries
- Tidy and clean the house
- Buy flowers (Saturday)
- Set up the altar
My daughter will come down on Thursday night, so she'll be here to help me with the preparations on Friday and Saturday and the cleaning up on Sunday. One of my friends, too, has offered to come on Saturday morning (or early afternoon) to help with the preparations. I just need to pace myself and not get too tired trying to do too much! :)