The choir was light that Sunday in summer, which is to say none of the strong voices showed up, being as they were-on vacation.
The choir director wondered was he was going to do.
Father will not be pleased by a weak performance, he thought. We have spoiled him, and he expects nothing but the best, but-hmmm!
The choir director look around the stately old church in the historic district of one of America’s truly significant cities.
Help me, Lord.
Help me find the one who will-
That’s when he saw HER!
He was an opera buff who could pick her out of a crowd anywhere.
She was a diva to the Nth power.
She was the real deal.
And here she was, obviously in town for the celebrated summer music festival, sitting quietly in a back pew waiting for Mass to start.
But, the choir director thought, the angel of music has descended. She is here among us mere mortals. She doesn’t want to stand out. She wants the morning off to worship with the regular folks, but she was sent for a reason. A very, very good reason.
And so the choir director looked right at her and gave her his most winning smile. He added a beckoning wave for good measure.
The diva smiled back in spite of herself. She really had wanted to blend into the polished pews and be a participant for a change. But she had been taught as a girl that to sing is to pray twice, so she humbly presented herself in the choir loft and proceeded to pray not twice by twice over.
And to say Father was pleased is to say the priest was practically apoplectic with spiritual bliss.
Oh, and the divine diva stayed for coffee and donuts in the hall after Mass, and she was as down to earth as any angel of grand opera could ever be.