Good Friday and Tenebrae
Amusing that one year I noted the church didn't get very dim because of the (unusually) bright sunshine outside and that things might have been different if we started later, say, at 7 PM. Well, this year we started at 7 PM on a cold grey day, for all the clouds were beginning to open up some. And when the nave and sanctuary lights went out it became *dark* and on the Epistle side of the Sanctuary, where there is no window, impossible to read anymore. Not just the Prayer Book, but the bulletin. Oh well, I was the only one.
But after the service ended, the 'noise" issued from the Sacristy and the lit candle brought in to the altar, the church had just the perfect feel, as I tried to capture in this photo. (Photoshoppers will no doubt soon locate Fr. McGrath in this photo, meditating while the rest of us were leaving.)
Fr. McGrath asked me before the service to read the Epistle for today, the Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Hebrews 10:1(-25, looking it up). As presented in the Book of Common Prayer (1928) it's something of an Epistler's nightmare: How to read this out loud so it make sense to the congregation, hearing it on a single pass through -- no preview, no review, no discussion. Paragraph breaks might have helped, but they weren't there. I just hope I didn't do too much harm to its wonderful message through my not-quite-adequate preparation.
A beautiful service, Fr. McGrath, and the household agrees.