Thursday, March 02, 2006

a holy lent

Of all the rites of our Church, Ash Wednesday is one of the quieter ones, only matched perhaps by Good Friday during Holy Week for its somber terseness.

Pay attention, we are reminded. Pay closer attention.

Last night, we observed our parish's Ash Wednesday evening service, singing a modern tune setting to the words of the American hymn "Just As I Am" and then a Tudor era anthem whose composer and title I cannot remember.

We all felt the dry, grainy charcoal on our foreheads made by the priest's fingers accompanied by the words reminding us of our mortality. We prayed the litany together, and shared in communion. Most left the church in silence.

Except for the choir. It is our main rehearsal time. And for the rest of the rehearsal, we sang two anthems from our 2005 Lessons and Carols service. The diocese, our parish and two others, are partnering to create a Lessons and Carols service made up from parts of the three parishes for airing on Indiana public broadcasting stations.

We're taping our two anthems and a hymn on Saturday morning.

So, having finished Epiphany, and having started Lent, we jumped back (or ahead, I suppose)to Advent.

Since we start rehearsing music before the actual season, being a choir member gives one a sense of either already focusing on what is coming up, or in being a little out of sync. Last night, I was feeling a little out of sync.

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