For some reason this year, I decided that I wasn't going to update too quickly on my Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday experience. So, here it is...
I was out at my little rural parish, which tends to be more "in step" with the way I like to celebrate these "high holy days" of the church year. Holy Thursday had a small congregation of mainly the core members. There were probably somewhere between 50 and 75 people there. I love this mass since it is one where I wash the feet of twelve parishioners in the same way that Jesus washed the feet of his disciples. It's a liturgy that, for me, focuses on the role of the priest in the community.
Good Friday was beautiful, although I forgot to take the Good Friday collection for the Holy Land for the second year in a row. If we lose Beit Jala this year to the Saracens, it's all my fault! No, but in all seriousness, I feel bad for not doing it, especially since the Holy Land was such a formative place for my faith. The carrying of the cross and veneration of that cross is so tied to Jerusalem and the church of the Holy Sepulcher that I can't believe I forgot.
I decided not to attend the Easter Vigil this year. I won't get many years where that will be possible so I decided to do it this year. But that meant that I started Easter on Sunday morning, which seemed a little strange. Nonetheless, the absence of an Easter Vigil was deftly made up for by my little rural parish. Incense! Candles! Easter Candle! Renewal of Baptismal Promises! Chanting all the prayers! Alleluia! It was incredible. It sort of confirmed for me that I really do hope to be a pastor someday. I made the decisions out there, which means I followed what the book calls for. It really felt celebratory.
He is Risen! He is truly Risen!