So much to report on it's hard to say where to start, so I guess I'll just start at the beginning.
Other than the McGraths, we were first to arrive this morning (to allow extra time because of Kathy's still limited mobility, though the wheelchair stayed home this week). Kathy noted with some sadness that nobody had come for Matins.
The Bible Study class was quite lively this morning, so we got only about halfway through the material (Ephesians 4:7-16) for today. Our numbers were down -- those who'd missed class today missed a lot. (I saw from my notes that in fact we had not missed a class last week; the previous class had covered Ephesians 4:1-6.) Next week's class is certain to be an interesting one!
After class we headed up to the church for the service. There was a faint, nice hint of incense in the air. (We do not use incense very often because it really bothers a few of our parishioners -- although I am given to understand that it's the charcoal, not the incense itself, that produces the annoying elements.)
That reminded me... a thurible. We'd talked about getting the church a new thurible due to the sad state of our current one. We'd even looked up thuribles on eBay -- there were certainly some, well, "interesting" thuribles for sale. A Greek Orthodox friend had suggested getting one with bells (12, to be exact); I'd never heard of such a thing, I wonder if this is specific to Orthodox churches?
The service opened with hymn 783 (ah, ha! another one above 600), Cwm Rhondda. Perfect for Kathy, who used to sing in the Seattle Welsh Choir. This time she had to sing it in English, though.
Father Daniel preached another excellent homily this morning, on testing the spirits who speak to us. In class we'd discussed the gifts we've been given; I think we're seeing one develop here.
And in a beautiful touch for Mother's Day, Josephine made beautiful corsages (pictured) for all the mothers. Fr. Daniel blessed them and all the mothers present received one.
The announcements included the Ladies' Craft Night on Friday the 19th (7:30 PM), and the second Mens' Group Saturday morning, beginning with Matins at 8:30 and followed by breakfast and fellowship. (It was suggested, though, that Gordon might not serve those who missed Matins.) This will be a work party too, with a burgeoning crop of weeds that need to be whacked.
Fr. Daniel, our expert on the 1940 Hymnal, noted that today's communion hymn, #195, is the oldest in the hymnal. Not the music but the words, which are a paraphrase from the Didache, the teaching of the 12 Apostles, somewhere around the year 110. Looking this up online I see there some uncertainty as to its exact date, but it would certainly be difficult to find anything much earlier!