October 22 — my husband’s and my wedding anniversary AND the feast day of St. John Paul II. Pope John Paul was a preeminent champion of marriage and family life and someone who greatly strengthened our marriage and ministry. Admittedly, I’m still a little giddy that our anniversary falls on his feast day. Actually, that coincidence has served as a nudge to press on with our various ministries. Maybe not a coincidence, after all?
On the subject of Pope John Paul, did you know he, then Karol Wojtyla, wrote a three-act play called The Jeweler’s Shop? I wasn’t aware until about three months ago, and now thanks to the Well-Read Mom book club, I know all about it! When this year’s book list came out, The Jeweler’s Shop was the one I was most excited to read. In it, Wojtyla explores relationships between men and women, the joys — and pains — of love and marriage. It’s a poignant and poetic play about the mysteries and pitfalls of human love through the lives of three couples.
So are you ready for another coincidence? It just so happened that The Jeweler’s Shop was playing onstage at a theatre company in Minneapolis, a four-hour drive from our home in Des Moines, over the same weekend as our tenth wedding anniversary. In celebration, my husband bought us tickets, and we headed north to the Open Window Theatre. On our drive, we read the book aloud together (I read, Joel drove!). Every word of it oozes with meaning as if hand-picked, à la St. John Paul II.
After our read-aloud, I said to my husband, “Wow, would that every married or engaged couple read and be moved by the wisdom here.” It’s one of those books that will remain with me for a very long time. As one reviewer said, it is “an indispensable meditation on the mystery of marriage.”
Have you read it? Thoughts?
Copyright 2014 Lisa Schmidt