A graced meal

by Fr. Jeff

“Thank you for doing that.”

I had just crunched down on a crouton.

My eyes darted to Fr. Mac across the table as I started to say, “Doing wha…?” My voice trailed when I saw he wasn’t speaking to me.

Instead, he was looking directly over my shoulder.

He said it again: “Thanks for doing that.” This time, he made the sign of the cross.

I heard a wooden chair scratch across the floor behind me as it was pushed away from the table.

With foot steps approaching, I quickly finished the crouton.

I had seen him come in. He was wearing a green BP polo and had ordered the Thursday special–meat loaf. Before I could stand up and turn around, Fr. Mac was already shaking his hand.

He was soft spoken: “I always pray before I eat. Catholics need to be proud of their faith and pray in public.”

For a few minutes, we stood there and talked about You.

I can’t help but remember how it all started: a simple sign of the cross followed by a word of gratitude.

Today, I thank You for

a graced meal.