Well, I'm going to brag about my two parishes a little, as I unwind after the Vigil Mass, with a snack and beer.
I already described the Holy Thursday Mass, and the night watch the Knights of Columbus kept. Good Friday began with morning prayer, confessions, which were many, until around 11:30. We had the Stations at 12:15, then Mid-day Prayer ("Sext") at 1 pm, then the Solemn Liturgy began at 2 pm. Since Mid-day Prayer was brief, and I'd already rehearsed the servers, I ducked back into the confessional--if I went over to the house, I'd just want to eat, anyway. A surprising number came, considering it wasn't scheduled. I told several that they might reflect on the providence of their making a confession at that moment; I might well not have had time to come back, they might not have had the opportunity. So they had experienced a moment of grace, something to consider.
Since we have only one Holy Thursday Mass for two parishes, but a Good Friday liturgy at both, one in the day, one in the evening, we have the challenge of how to share the Eucharist with both parishes. So last year, I hit upon the solution of having someone drive me, with the Eucharist, from St. Mary to St. Boniface. So we did that, following the Divine Mercy chaplet, and my marathon Good Friday was finished at around 4 pm.
But back to the liturgy of Good Friday: it was beautiful! The choir was so good, and they sang the Reproaches during the veneration of the Cross, which I found very moving.
Then we gathered again, for Holy Saturday Morning Prayer, this for the candidates for holy communion and the catechumens, after which we have a rehearsal for the Vigil--which was brief, I've decided there's not much point in going through things too much, folks just worry. I just call folks forward and I get them through it. It worked fine.
After that, rehearsal for the servers--that took time, and God bless our corps of servers for the Vigil, they worked hard, what with all the processions, candle-lighting, helping with sacraments, etc.
After that, began the marathon of getting the church ready. Lots of candles to put out, getting everything set right for the baptisms and confirmations, etc. I finally got my homily together around 4 pm, this time one for the whole weekend--in years' past, I did a different one for the Vigil, but not this year.
Vigil began at 8:30 pm or thereabouts, and it was a bit windy, so we had some trouble with the Easter Candle. Once again, I left on my mic during my commentary, so everyone in church heard me say, "try it this way" and "anyone have a lighter?" We got it going, and we were off to the races.
Father Tom carried the Easter Candle and sang the Exsultet, which is really something considering he was deathly sick last year, Deo gratias! We proclaimed all the readings and you know what? The sky did not fall. I did warn people it would be long, and we had a good crowd, I'd say 250-300. The readers and cantors did really well. Lighting the candles around the altar during the Gloria took too long, but that's my fault--lots of candles!
We had, I think, 11 baptisms, from very young to adults, and then even more confirmations. That took awhile; we are thinking that, for those who aren't to be baptized, but confirmed and/or received into the Church, we will do that at another time.
The choir did well, sang beautifully, as did all God's People, and if I do say so myself, St. Boniface was beautiful. If I can, I'll get a picture up, I had someone take pictures.
We wrapped up around 11:20, so a little short of three hours. A little cleanup afterward, and then home; the sisters invited me over for a bit of wine, but I told them I had a house guest named "Sam Adams"; they didn't get the joke, they aren't beer-drinkers I guess.
Next Mass is 9 am--after this, that's a breeze!
The Lord is risen! Alleluia!