Posted by: savayla | September 4, 2010

Prayer to Elvis

Yesterday was a very interesting one.  From getting our Chest X-rays done for immigration purposes, having a picnic on the banks of a duck pond in the beautiful Queens gardens where Ayla and I both had our fingers nipped hard by the ducks and we were rained out , to learning the Ka Mate Haka for the Guiness World Record attempt next weekend on Tahunanui Beach.

But the one part that sticks in my mind the most, apart from the words of the Haka which are drumming to their own beat, was when we went for a walk to the Christ Church  Cathedral.   We had our passport photos taken and had to wait half an hour for them to be processed.

We had not made a conscious or verbal decision about where we were going to go, we all just headed up the quiet street towards the cathedral.  We love cathedrals, although we are not Christians.  We also love Chinese Temples and especially Hindu Temples the most and are always drawn to them.  I think our love of Cathedrals comes from reading, 3 times already, Ken Follets novel Pillars of the Earth and now its sequal.

Christ Church cathedral is quite ugly from the outside, in my opinion.  We had been to the St. Pauls Cathedral Dunedin in April this year as it is the only cathedral in New Zealand with a stone vaulted ceiling.  It is a magnificent cathedral, both inside and out.

Girls sitting at the top of the stairs at St. Pauls Cathedral, Dunedin

Stone vaulted ceiling

Inside, the Cathedral is quite beautiful and once again, the girls were charmed with its quietness, the sun falling softly from the stained glass windows onto the wooden floors.  We were walking around, admiring all the features, the majestic arches, the organ pipes that seem to reach for the heavens, when we came to the back where there was a ring of candle holders, with one large one lit  in the middle and two lit candles in the holders.  The girls were intrigued and I told them that when a person wants to prayer for something or for someone, they light a candle , put it into one of the holders, and then say a prayer.  Ayla asked if she could please do it, so I gave her a gold coin as it is by gold coin donation, and she went to get her candle.  I asked her if she knew who she wanted to pray for and she said “Yes, Louis Armstrong.  No, actually Elvis “.  I was a bit taken aback and wanted to laugh but I managed to stifle it .  I helped her to light it and she stood there, hands in the universal prayer position and prayed silently .  Savannah then wanted to do one too, but she wanted to do a prayer to Eirikur, my grandfather in Iceland who died last week.  So both my children stood there quietly in this beautiful cathedral, heads bent , one praying to Elvis and the other to Eirikur.

I thought they were finished.  No, Savannah noticed that there is a prayer board where you can write up a note, pin it up and others can pray for you or your cause, or you can simply just write out your prayer.  Savannah wrote “Thank you Eirikur. For bringing joy to the family and for painting rocks.  I really wanted to meet you and I get the feeling that I will one day. ”  Ayla drew a picture of Elvis, saying “la la la ” and his name at the top.  Ayla loves Elvis’s singing and thinks he was a great man.

So two great men will be getting a lot of prayers sent from two little girls.

Savannah asked me when we had left St. Pauls Cathedral in Dunedin (we actually had to physically drag them out and then they still would not leave and sat on the top of the steps for at least 10 minutes.) why I did not believe in God but I always went into Churches and Cathedrals.  And I told her that these were houses built for some peoples god, that they were built beautifully and with a lot of love and that you could feel the love, and peace inside.  That I always found them very peaceful.  And Ayla chirped in “yes, that is until the preacher starts preaching ” .  I had to laugh, yes, that is right, when the preacher starts, then I walk out.

Yesterday I told them again, that by saying a prayer in the Cathedral, they could pray to their own god, whom they don’t know yet as they are too young to figure this out and it is a choice we are giving them.  To me, a church, temple, or shack is good enough to pray to your own God, and it does not have to be to that Churches God either.

Rest in Peace Elvis and Eirikur !!!

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