Friday, April 02, 2010

Chilly repose

Altar of Repose
Originally uploaded by goforchris.
Another Maundy Thursday, another vigil by the Altar of Repose in the Lady Chapel at the back of the dark church - a chapel lit surprisingly brightly by the candles on the altar, but bitterly cold despite the heating which had been on all through the service. It is usually a chilly business, and tonight, as the temperature outside dropped to 0ÂșC and the draught fell on our heads from the hole opened in the ceiling to check for rot, it was all too easy to let the mind wander.

You could say the wandering, in my case, was vaguely relevant as I wondered how chilly it might be in Gethsemane that night at Passover time. I found myself thinking that at least the disciples of Jesus would have robes to pull over their heads, and wishing that I had one. Sleep, on the other hand, was not a possibility in our situation, and the fact that the disciples seem to have drifted off to sleep while Jesus prayed points to rather warmer air.

But we waited, four of us, extinguishing the candles in the wooden stands (one is just visible at each side of the photo) as they burned down in the eddying air and threatened to set the whole thing alight, until the final gospel reading. And then out, into the night where the stars seemed to nail the sky in place and our breath streamed warm in the frigid air, and down the hill to the town. Good Friday is almost upon us.


  1. Anonymous10:16 AM

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  2. Your wee garden looks lovely! I may hire you next year!

  3. Thanks, Kenny - we're transforming it into the Easter Garden for Sunday!