Christmas Potpourri

Favorite moments from Midnight Mass:
– concelebration by all four(!) of our parish priests, & reflecting on how very lucky we are
– seeing the black priest, flanked by two brown altar girls, waiting to receive the gifts at the altar
– hearing the assembly sing the third verse of Silent Night a capella
– singing the Latin verse of Adeste Fideles (and not needing to look at the words 🙂 )
– hearing a homily on the Incarnation (instead of superficial baby-Jesus sentiment)

Surprising moments:
– Hearing a passage from Acts as the second reading!! I had no idea we ever got non-epistles in the lectionary. Apparently we got readings 1&2 from the Vigil Mass, and the gospel from the Mass During the Night. (Is that allowed? or was it an oops?)
– Hearing the pastor describe the original purpose of Midnight Mass as “getting a jump on Christmas”, “getting Mass out of the way”, that is now outmoded since we no longer have to wait until Midnight to celebrate a Christmas mass. (??!)

Distracting moments:
– looking at the nativity scene after Mass, noticing Mary’s oh-so-very-artistic kneeling/bending position, and thinking “It really doesn’t look like she just gave birth!”

What were the highlights of your Christmas church service?

If you went to Midnight Mass, did you hear the Christmas Proclamation sung? (Have you ever?)

Does your church do Christmas pageants? Mine doesn’t, but I can’t imagine anything could be better than this perfectly delightful children’s re-telling of the story of the first Christmas from behind the scenes:

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2 Responses to Christmas Potpourri

  1. I was in a really dark place when I went to Mass at 10:00 PM. For me, the highlight was the offertory hymn, when we sang It Came Upon A Midnight Clear. For the first time, I heard the third verse.

    Yet with the woes of sin and strife
    The world has suffered long;
    Beneath the angel-strain have rolled
    Two thousand years of wrong;
    And man, at war with man, hears not
    The love-song which they bring;
    O hush the noise, ye men of strife,
    And hear the angels sing!

    • I hope the darkness has lifted for you some since then.

      Thanks for sharing that verse. It seems incongruous against the background of contemporary US Christmastide, but a number of Christmas carols have one or more verses that emphasize the human sin from which Christ came to redeem us. (Easter carols, too.)

      Sadly, in the parishes I’ve been to, those verses are normally skipped as too much of a “downer” . :/

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