Soon night will fall, and we begin the Triduum, the sacred three days.
I have a moment's respite--I just left the school cafeteria, where we had the annual dinner for area priests, with lamb, ham, beans, potatoes, rolls, salad, dessert, assortment of fruit, wine and coffee.
Several parishioners graciously put it all together, and it's wonderful. The priests have to eat and run, as they all have Mass somewhere, but it's a good time. I was just chatting with the parishioners, we were divvying up the leftovers, I always like to plan for that, both for myself, but also for the helpers, and of course, that means if extra priests show up, no problem.
As you can imagine, and as I've written enough about, it's busy. With two parishes, each church has to be prepared for Good Friday. With one pastor, it is both appropriate theologically I think--and in any case practical--that we have only one Mass of the Lord's Supper for both parishes, and one Easter Vigil. Each year they alternate. Both churches must be prepared, but one can be prepared for Good Friday early, since there's no Holy Thursday liturgy there. That's what I was doing this AM. Plus I had parish business to attend to--I was signing checks at one point, lots of that to do.
Down to the hospital this afternoon, after I checked on the volunteers preparing the dinner. Then "None"--i.e., mid-afternoon prayer--with the priests, followed by snacks, drinks and dinner. Oh, and earlier, I had to run to the store to pick up some last minute supplies, including wine, beer, soft drinks and a few other items. I found myself wondering if that's what one or more of the Apostles did, on the afternoon when they had that first Supper-beginning of the Holy Mass with the Lord?
Yes, I'm a bit tired, but less so than I was earlier this week. It's not the liturgies themselves, so much--it's all that leads up to it. But what a privilege to be a priest, to celebrate and experience these sacred mysteries?