The Joy of Family

March 24, 2017

The following personal essay was written by Ashley Freiburger, a sophomore Creative Writing student at Bishop Chatard High School:

God has put 48 first cousins in my life. Not many people are able to say they grew up in such a big family – full of fun, laughter, and most importantly, God’s love.

It is not very often that all 48 cousins are together at one time. However, we had the occasion to come together when we celebrated a family wedding last fall.

The day after the wedding was an absolutely beautiful September day. In my family, God comes first. What better way to thank God for one another and for the beautiful day than to celebrate Mass together? My uncle is a priest and he agreed to celebrate the Mass for us. We were ready to praise God. We sang; we held hands; we participated in the homily, and shared in the Eucharist.

Near the end of the Mass, when we were all silently praying, I began to look around. I watched my family members deep in prayer and my little cousins praying, but anxious to be done. My grandmother winked at me and smiled.

I couldn’t help but thank God for the big family with which I was blessed. We fight; we bicker; we annoy one another. However, at times like this those moments fade away, and there is nothing but love in the air.

Reflection posted with permission of Ashley and her parents




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