A Catholic Tradition Honoring My Mother

Nationality: American

Primary Language: English

Other Language(s): Spanish

Age: 20

Residence: New York City, USA

Performance Date: April 13, 2017 (Skype)


Mike is a 20 year old man, born and raised in New York, who is a mobile phone salesman in New York City. He is a high school graduate whose family is of Puerto Rican Heritage.


Interviewer: Good Afternoon. You mentioned that you follow a tradition your Mom taught you. Could you explain please?


Informant: “Ya it is like I am Catholic you know you know and we really go by this Catholic thing like every time I do the cross. Every time I pass a Church, I do the cross. And I feel if I didn’t do the cross that I would feel different.”


Interviewer: You mentioned you would feel different, why?


Informant: “Like this was a thing, you know the do the cross, that I use to ah see my Mom do every time, you know, we were passing a Church. Like it ah didn’t matter if youse was on a bus or a car or like just walking down a street, um she would always cross herself.  Then… then I was, you know older then a little kid, ah every time she crossed herself you know and if I was wit her, she would stare at me if I didn’t cross myself.  So I guess, like um I would um feel different like I wuz disrespecting my Mother, you know.  So like , I am a Momma’s boy, she is very close. And um I don’t want to, you know give her anything that wouldn’t be very respectful. Does that make sense to you?”


Interviewer:  Yes it does. It is a very nice thing to do. Do you do the sign of the cross even when she is not with you?


Informant: “Of course, it’s like so deep in my bones and mind that it is like ya I am like a robot! When I see the church, like I have to stop and do my cross, you know.  It is so beautiful cause I see my Mom smiling a lot every time ah um I do that.”


Thoughts about the piece:  

Devoted Catholics worldwide have been making the “sign of the cross” since the 400s:

Here is a demonstration of how to do this movement prayer properly:





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