Everything I know about ‘feasts’ I learned from Mary Poppins

By Sarah McDonald, NOLA Catholic Parenting

It is something we all do. Sit down to watch a beloved old sitcom or movie from childhood, only to realize, “Oh, that’s what they were talking about.”

Blessedly, some comedic themes and jokes were written cleverly to go over the heads of children in ’80s and ’90s television entertainment. The same can be said for positive messages, too.

One rainy afternoon sitting down to watch one of my childhood family favorites, “Mary Poppins,” one particular line stuck out to me. In the scene where Mary Poppins gives Jane and Michael the medicine after being caught out in the rain, the children ask for more. Mary Poppins swiftly responds with, “Enough is as good as a feast.”

I have seen “Mary Poppins” countless times from childhood into adulthood, yet, I never even heard that line until I was in my mid-30s and a mother of little children.

The Holy Spirit must have been inspiring that particular viewing, because since hearing it, I have often repeated it to my children and even myself in various situations.

Let’s consider:

First, as a Catholic adult, we could look at this from a theological point of view and recall that Jesus in the Eucharist is “enough,” and the feast is the Mass. That’s an important point that cannot be forgotten in this discussion.

Next, practically speaking, as an adult, when I find myself wanting more, like a bigger house, the new dress or a newer car, or even worse, using the dreaded phrase, “I need,” my conscience reminds me of that simple phrase bringing reason and even peace into my mind. Sure, a bigger house might be nice, but we do have all we need. Thanks be to God, there is very little we need. We have more than enough.

Finally, as a parent, it is our God-given duty to raise our children in the faith to be good Catholic citizens of the world. That means, in part, raising them to be kind, sharing and unselfish with a sense of gratefulness for their blessings, big and small.

It is not an easy thing to do in today’s society, yet teaching my children that “enough is as good as a feast” has become my mantra.

So, here is your challenge – the next time you feel the urge to click “Buy Now” on the Amazon app or your children are begging for that new set of Legos (as you keep finding the littlest Legos all over the house), remember, “Enough is as good as a feast,” and resist the urge! I know from experience there is grace in that simple act.

Sarah McDonald is a wife and mother living with her family of seven in Metairie. Professionally, she works as Director of Communications for the Archdiocese of New Orleans. She and her family are avid sports fans who love to cook and spend time with family and friends.

Please send comments to nolacatholicparenting@clarionherald.org. Visit the blog featuring three new posts a week at www.nolacatholicparenting.org.

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