Even after sixteen years, I cannot calm down for the Mass of the Lord’s Supper. A few small flaws, but nothing noticeable, nor out of character for us. I was telling myself on the way to church from the office about an hour before Mass last night, “When you’re eighty years old and in retirement, you’ll think about those dozens of Holy Weeks and wish you could experience just one Holy Thursday in one of your favorite parishes, with one of your favorite groups, making sacred music just once more like the good ol’ days. Wouldn’t this be the one you’d want to relive?” Maybe it was a prayer, for I felt at peace momentarily. Then I lost myself in Martha-ism again.
Afterward, I was able to relax, to appreciate the servers especially. They did a smooth and able job all night. My ambition for Katie, Danny, or Samantha would be to become a liturgist or a priest and lead their own Holy Thursday in twenty, thirty years. Whatever the future brings for them, I’m pleased they have the seeds of Triduum participation deeply planted in their spiritual lives.
A number of years ago, a small cadre of children’s choir members wanted to sing at the Easter Vigil. In those days, Easter Vigil music was led by an “all-star” group of parish singers and musicians. But, I thought, why not? As the years went on, these three or four kids would come to the extra rehearsals, then drag their parents out late on Holy Saturday for, as they put it, “the Mass that never ends.” One year, those poor kids were dropping like flies, it seemed. One nearly fainted. One got sick. Then one of the adults started feeling ill. Surely the Easter fire isn’t contagious.
I’m grateful for lots of time to pray today. I’ll pray for the rain to finish by tomorrow’s nightfall. I talked the pastor into an outdoor Easter Fire this year. He’s getting nervous about windy cold rain in the forecast. However the rain falls, I’m going to draw on the memories of Easter Vigil enthusiasm from my young Iowa friends. Hopefully, I’ll be a little calmer by tomorrow night.
Peace and Holy Triduum to all.