Kissing is such a wonderful thing. (Thank you, Captian Obvious.) I thoroughly enjoy kissing my wife. I love kissing my daughter. And in the last four years since I discovered Orthodoxy, I have found kissing icons, crosses and the Gospel (among other holy things) to be a worthy and natural way to worship God.
I was always a bit circumspect to venerate the icons at home whenever Anna was able to observe me saying my prayers. God certainly knew that I worshipped him through the honor I gave his saints. Anna may well have been pretty weirded out by it. But then she started going to worship with me. I couldn’t not venerate the icons at Liturgy. So I did. And I guess she just got used to it. (She did ask me about it once. I assume my answer satisfied her.)
Well, in the last few weeks, Sofie has learned to kiss (including blowing kisses, which I always find joyous!). I just took it as natural that we should teach Sofie to kiss the icons. So, while we were waiting in line during Communion to receive Father’s blessing, Sofie and I were near the icons. I bent down and kissed the icon of Christ. I looked at Sofie and said, “Kiss?” I then held her so that she could kiss the icon. She was a bit hesitant, not knowing for sure what she was to do. I kissed the icon again, and said, again, “Kiss?” She placed her hands on either side of Christ’s face, and lowered herself to kiss the icon with a resounding smack.
Now, I didn’t really discuss this with Anna. It’s just something we do at Church. So it was neat this past Sunday to see Anna taking Sofie up to the icons, to bend down and kiss them herself, and say to Sofie, “Kiss?” Upon which, Sofie being now practiced, our little girl did.
Yep. This is how we learn the Faith.
God make us worthy parents. May Sofie soon come to the laver of regeneration.