Although there is some minor dispute on the date, several sources record that, in 1427, São Miguel became the second of the islands discovered by Gonçalo Velho Cabral to be settled by colonists from continental Portugal. There is, however, no dispute as to Whom the island was dedicated. The picture above is a painting by Domingo Rebelo entitled Descoberta da ilha de São Miguel (Discovery of the island of São Miguel). It depicts how families from São Miguel understand their beginnings – their beginnings were in thanksgiving to God.
And why should any of this matter?
Here at Serendipity Farmhouse Faith and Family come first. For many, many months, our family has not had the opportunity to come together as a group, either to pray or to play. Last Saturday, that painful separation came to an end. It was Grandson #7 who made our reunion a reality. At 1030AM, he was Baptized and was born again “… of water and the Holy Spirit.”
Just as my grandparents, born on São Miguel, had my father Baptized; just as my parents had me Baptized, just as my beloved Wife and I had our children Baptized; so on that Saturday morning, dearest Daughter #2 and her beloved husband, had Grandson #7 Baptized. Son #1 and his beloved Spouse were proud to take on the responsibility as Godparents. – – And so there it was. Our family witnessed and was blessed to see another new beginning in the Spirit, and it was truly a beginning in thanksgiving to God.
Does this all sound too serious?
This is not just a family tradition or custom – this is something sacred and solemn – this is a family living every day in Faith. And with the solemnity of this precious moment there also comes joy, family humor, and great celebration. And celebration is something this family does quite well, especially when it has been so long denied to us.
After the ceremony, we all made our way to the Daughter #2’s charming hideaway, nestled as it is amidst the beauty of the world-renowned Shenandoah Valley. No corner was cut and no expense was spared. The grill was filled with burgers and dogs, the kitchen was replete with the finest fruits, snacks, and hors d’oeuvres. The yard was instantly filled with cousins dashing about, celebrating their first meeting with Cousin #12. And whether adult or child, not one soul was left untouched by the joy of being together again!
And, dear Reader, if you read Mr. Monte’s post RV Trip 2021-01: A Very Tent Situation, you will be happy to know that last Saturday there was also a type of redemption that took place. In the picture below you will see Son #1 checking his phone. Directly behind him you will see a beautifully erected screen tent. Unlike the terrible experience recounted in Mr. Monte’s post, my son confirmed that I had indeed set a new world’s record in erecting that tent. – I’m still waiting for Mr. Monte’s sincere apology and congratulations.