Sunday, April 5, 2009

Palm Sunday

Well, I've been five hours on the road to-day: 200 km to Hobart and back, so I can get to real Mass...

The Palm Sunday Procession and Missa cantata - including the long Passion according to St Matthew - took an hour and forty minutes (oh dear!); Fr Gerard, a Passionist who has generously volunteered to say this monthly Mass, ever since its initiator, Fr Jarrett, was made Bishop of Lismore, wisely I think read the Passion in English as the Motu proprio permits (he perforce monotones all the items he has to chant, since he's not very certain about his singing), and in a brief fervorissimo reminded us of St Paul of the Cross's dictum that above all else, the Passion proves in an overwhelming way how much God loves us, and went on to beg that, at Mother Mary's prayers, we would the more surely grasp this amazing love, and live accordingly.

The choir sang the chant competently, with yours truly joining in from the pews, not always quite in time or in tune!  Again, it would have been nice had they supplied something to fill the long Offertory - the Vexilla Regis prodeunt perhaps, or the Stabat Mater, which would have meshed well with the message of the sermon.

I think the servers, who are still getting better - just as Fr is getting faster at getting through the Offertory and Canon - next need to extend themselves to providing an M.C., who could have fixed such little points as the procession going to fast for Fr both to and from the grotto where the palms were blessed and distributed, and the unfortunate omission of the prayer after the last responsory of the procession (Fr began vesting for the Mass forthwith).

After Mass, some dear friends of mine had myself and others around for lunch; it was good to see again my old choirmaster, Bede, who's now blind, alas, but still bearing up well.

As always, on the way to and from Hobart I remembered those three priests buried at Campbell Town, and my godmother buried at Pontville; and on the way home had a sobering reminder of mortality, seeing the wreckage of a fatal car crash on the highway near Bridgewater.  Sweet Jesus, mercy!

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