I’m too old to play. The game is too complicated for me to coach. But I’ve been working out my blessing arm and I’m ready to play to my strength. This is the National Championship, so I’m a blessing machine. You name it, I’ve blessed it. But I invite all loyal readers to let me know what else needs blessing. Here are the rules.
I can bless things or actions. Obviously I hit the pads, helmets, and shoes – they’re not just protective, they’re the vestments necessary for this final event which we ardently hope will be a celebration. I thought about blessing the footballs, but there’s a chance that, like messenger pigeons, those fall into enemy hands. I’ve also blessed the running, throwing, and kicking of our lads. I struggled with whether I could bless the hitting, but since we’ve had a couple of saints known to pop a guy (looking at you, Ignatius), and since Bill Corby was able to bless soldiers going into battle, all our lads’ hits will be holy.
I can perform exorcisms and consecrations. Since an exorcism is the casting out of a demon, this is simply a lost cause in Miami. The lads on the team didn’t really have any demons needing a-slaying since their final exams are all done. So I performed a general exorcism of the stadium for the game; but since the Hurricanes play here, that was like turning back the tide with a spoon. So I concentrated on consecrations. Outside of the Big Consecrations at Mass, holy dwellings and shelters can be consecrated, like a church. Thus, I set out to consecrate the locker room for the lads. But a consecration of this sort requires holy oils, and all I could find lying around was something called Bengay. Good God! That stuff burns like fire and is perhaps bewitched! Nonetheless, the locker room is blessed.
I can’t perform blessings that are reserved to a Bishop or the Pope. I don’t really know why those guys are holding back on us. But I know that the Word of Life mural on the library was blessed by a French Cardinal. That makes it only slightly less holy than the Pope’s hanky. So I picked up a whole ream of Touchdown Jesus holy cards, blessed those again just to be safe, and I’m ready to dispense them like a broken slot-machine cashing out.
I can bless persons. As the statue of the Sacred Heart in front of the Main Building says, “Come one, come all” … or something like that (but certainly not “Jump, Mom, Jump!”) You want a blessing, I’m giving out blessings. All the players and coaches have been thoroughly blessed. All the members of the band have been blessed, and I threw in their instruments (but not the glockenspiels – too German). I’ve blessed all trainers, managers, cheerleaders, and all support staff of any kind. Heck, I’m ready to bless anyone wearing blue, gold, or green. Listen up: I have special blessings ready for all of our students loose here in this modern Babylon. And I hasten to remind said students that while some blessings are permanent, many are transitory – they wear off when the only thing you have on is a swimsuit.
I can perform a verbal or a real blessings. So when I say, “I bless you,” you are blessed. When my words of blessing would fail to have any effect, like—say—when they are drown out by thousands of Alabama fans screaming indecipherable phrases of exotic vulgarity, then my real actions still have the force of blessing. Thus, when we are making yet another heroic goal-line stand, you will see me with my hands raised to Heaven. If it goes a full four downs, I many need those around me to hold my arms up like Moses. And yes, that will bring us to the Promised Land.
I’m tanned, rested, and ready – I can bless all day and half the night in Latin, French, and English. The feast of St. Andre Bessette, CSC, has been moved to January 7, so he’s ready to bless in French-Canadian. Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas on January 7, so they’re ready to bless in Greek and Russian. The BVM has been on hand for every game this season (can anyone fail to believe that?), so She’s ready for the last hurrah; and for some reason, She speaks Irish – says She’s spent years over there and loves the place. And interestingly enough, in the Nahuatl language of Central America, the phrase “It will be blessed” is TEOCHIHUAZ. I assure you, that is no holy coincidence!