Friday, 2 April 2010

Holy Week : Maundy Thursday

Well, a great beginning to the Sacred Triduum 2010.
First of all, I have to eat my words from yesterday about the opening hymn from the Chrism Mass not changing for about twenty years - coz it did today!!  All of us priests were fainting with the trauma... Then - the Archbishop got applause at the end of his homily. I didn't think my heart could stand any more. Then I realised that I had left the parishes' oil stocks back at the presbytery. Fr James usually brings them to the Chrism Mass to be refilled from the newly blessed Oil of Catechumens, Oil of the Sick and Sacred Chrism. James was coughing badly this morning and decided to stay away - and I promptly forgot to take them. Whoops!
Then up to Corpus Chisti High School where preparations for our Mass of the Lord's Supper were in full swing. The celebration this evening went very well. About 250 turned up, and we moved easily through the meal, the Rite of Commitment, the Liturgy of the Eucharist, and so out into the candle-lit garden for the Watching. What a beautiful atmosphere there was in our own Gethsemane...
And so to my third Michelangelo Pieta. This version of the famous scene dates from even further into the great sculptor's old age. The scene now seems to emerge from the marble. The muscular body of Jesus hangs limp in the arms of his mother, whose features are barely discernible. Here Michelngelo starts to take us, I think into new realms of sculpture, where we are painfully aware of the very act of chiselling away the hard stone to release the figures within, who seem reluctant to struggle free, so heavy their burden. Stay awhile...

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