On Easter, He Walked Her Down the Aisle in Baby Steps
He was very thin and very tall, maybe 6’4″, and she maybe 5’10”, the couple in front of us at church, as we celebrated the Easter Vigil. In their sixties, and solemn, even dour, they didn’t sing and they didn’t smile. They seemed just to be observing, and I thought they were visitors.
Hair still dark, he had an old-fashioned haircut, close-cropped on the sides and a little floppy on top, but he’d also dyed the floppy part blond. He was wearing a tie but no jacket. He stood very straight. With his bony, serious face, Hollywood would cast him as a righteous but naive farmer, unable to deal with the modern world.
At the sharing of the peace, that point just before communion when people greet their neighbors, he turned around, still solemn and dour, still standing absolutely straight. He thrust out his hand. Then his face exploded into a smile, and his bony face was beautiful. His wife twisted around as if she couldn’t easily move her feet, and raised her hand just a little from the elbow and waved it side to side two or three times,. She also smiled, but hers was shy smile, and she was beautiful too.
At communion time, she side-stepped carefully out into the aisle and waited for him. He wrapped her right arm in his and walked her slowly down the aisle, taking baby steps for someone so tall. He held onto her as they got to the priest and as she leaned her head forward to receive the Lord, then walked her slowly back to their seat.
What they faced together I don’t know. But in them you could see that Jesus Christ is risen today.