Saturday, April 03, 2010

Paschal Alleluias

Allejuia! The New Fire was lit, the Paschal Candle processed into the dark church, the old readings heard, the Litany sung. Now the candle burns in the darkness, to be there when we return to church in the morning, where the risen Christ will greet us in the breaking of bread ...

It never fails, that dark service, the tiny lights that grow in the gloom as the candles around are lit from that first fire. Always the thrill, always something different and much that is timeless. Tonight a sudden wind threatened the fire, making the lighting of it difficult - and raising the possibility of a server or two losing an alb to the flame - but when it came, in a rush of gold in the gloaming, it was all the more triumphant. Tonight it was so dark and our tiny candles so compelling that we who read could not see the floor, feeling our way to the lectern as if we had just learned to walk. Tonight I sang the plainsong of the Paschal Litany rather than the Exsultet, and felt there was no reason for the song to stop.

And it is so, so satisfying to know that the Paschal candle has been left burning, left in this era of Health and Safety, this time of Insurance Risks - our candle will be there burning in the morning. Allelulia!


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Chris - where ever we piskies are we find a place. For me it was Southwark Cathedral this evening - more at my blog

  3. Indeed. Enjoyed your account of it!