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November 01, 2007


Steady presences:
a friend, a journal, the smile
of a silent priest.

Very thought provoking post. I must say I kind of like a big cold stone church. I walk in from the outside where it is dark and cold. I sit down and everyone is bundled up. The lighting is muted. As the service progresses the warmth and the light increases. I loose myself in my own thoughts during the homily. When the prayers are offered up for the deceased I listen for the name that I added(my wife who is in Mexico asked that I add the name...she will be visiting the person's grave). By the time communion is over I am warm and ready for some hot chocolate and day of the dead bread.
I know that the churches have problems and I am troubled by many things that I see. But tonight I have come for the sacrifices and all has gone well. And I felt the warmth. I pray that we all find some warmth and comfort.

What a lovely description of the church and the service. It brought to life a familiar setting and scene and the feelings invoked by that old and beautiful liturgy many of us still recall and cherish deeply.

Thank you, Dave. Yes, c'est ça.

Fred, thank you for writing this wonderful description of your own experience. I hope I didn't imply that I didn't like the cold stone churches, because I do. You're right about the warmth and light increasing as the service moves along - both because they actually do, and because you feel more at home. The warmth increases in the atmosphere of shared worship and prayer, and it also increases within, so we leave, hopefully, with more than we came with.

Hi Margaret! I'm glad this post resonated with you.It had been a long time since I was " not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under Thy table" but I love the prayer, and all that language, actually. I suppose that the literary Anglican speaking, but still - we've dumbed down our language so much over the past century, instead of teaching good English words to each generation. No wonder Johnny can't read any of the classics, let alone Shakespeare or English poetry. It pains me, but what's to be done?

Thank you, Beth. I am blushing at the sudden, unexpected attention. I suppose it's one of those things that comes when you least try for it and just do what you do. Nice to hear, though, that it's appreciated.

Lovely church description. I haven't been able to feel connected in a church in a very long time, though I was was a pretty devout Catholic. We are having a memorial Mass for my mother in a college chapel, which should be nice and intimate. And I feel grateful to that community for going out of their way to help us out with it. That's the thing we miss when we don't belong to a church - the community.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.