Triduum Moments

A few high points from our Triduum services this year:

– I got to hear Eucharistic Prayer 1 for the first time in the new translation! (Well, half of it: the other half was in Spanish.) I liked it; it was full of verbs piled upon verbs, descriptive praises piled upon descriptive phrases, like the first section of the Gloria. I can definitely see how that is an aesthetic that you have to be tuned to in order to appreciate, and I guess I’m tuned to it. And I really appreciated that it was said in its entirety, including all the names of the saints, and in particular including the names of the women, who are all marked as optional in the rubric. This inclusion of names is the closest that Roman Catholic women get to the altar; it brought tears to my eyes.
– The procession to the Altar of Repose was accompanied by Pange Lingua, sung in Latin. πŸ™‚
– Our deacon presided over the service on Good Friday again this year, and again it startled me (although I figured it out right away this year). I find it a very generous inclusive gesture by our parish priests to include the deacon in the sharing out of the Triduum services (and this is the only one he can do, because it is not a Mass).
– Let the little children come: before the fire was lit outside on Saturday night, there was a special invitation for the children to come up to the front so they could see the lighting of the fire and the blessing of the new Easter candle. (Short adults had to fend for ourselves. πŸ˜‰ )
– I particularly noticed this year the strong baptismal references in all the collects after the readings during the Liturgy of the Word.
– I really appreciated chanting the eucharistic preface and the Lord’s Prayer, something we don’t usually do. And I’m not generally a fan of the now-mandatory eucharistic vessels of precious metals, but at the Easter Vigil, with enough concelebrants (robed in gold and white) to lift up several of the gold patens and silver chalices for the final chanted doxology, I did appreciate the beauty of it.
– Finally, this beautiful passage of one of the Isaiah readings really struck me:

O afflicted one, storm-battered and unconsoled,
I lay your pavements in carnelians,
and your foundations in sapphires;
I will make your battlements of rubies,
your gates of carbuncles,
and all your walls of precious stones.
All your children shall be taught by the LORD,
and great shall be the peace of your children.
In justice shall you be established,
far from the fear of oppression,
where destruction cannot come near you.

What a loving, beautiful description.

What about you? Any high points from your Triduum or Easter liturgies to share?

And don’t forget, Easter is a season! This first week is traditionally called Bright Week, because in the early church, the newly baptized wore their white baptismal garments for a full eight days as they completed their instruction in the faith, now enlightened by the Holy Spirit. Consider wearing something white every day this week to recall your own baptism.

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