A friend and I stayed after the Good Friday Service and assisted the good Monsignor with decorating. He likes simple, and it was a matter of carrying in and placing 16 Easter Lilies. It is fun to watch the wheels turn, as he generally knows what he wants. We moved things here and there and offered suggestions along the way. An hour later we were done. It is divine humor that I do any kind of decorating, because it is not one of my "gifts".
Empty tabernacle...ready and waiting. There are six plants there. Then two near the crucifix.
My boys served for the Easter Vigil. They had practice on Saturday morning. Our parish is rather informal. Serving in jeans and sneakers is the norm, and no one bats an eye. For a while, when they were younger, I enforced the "no jeans" statute, but as they grew older and faster, they owned no dress pants or shoes. My 15 year old has a nice pair of pants and a shirt from 8th grade graduation last year. I told him that he should wear it to serve in Saturday evening. And then, had the wild thought to buy my current 8th grader what he would need for graduation (in a month) so that he could also look nice. Amazingly, we found what we needed. JCPenneys had ONE pair of pants that fit him. We bought it, and a shirt from the men's department. A little big...but he'll grow. They had NO shoes that fit him, so a quick trip to Pay-Less paid off.
I think they are handsome. I'm not biased or anything!
They served with my niece, who serves at her parish. We "borrowed" her, because my SIL volunteered her, and because we are not blessed with an abundance of servers at our parish. Not really blessed with an abundance of youth. Only seven little ones made their First Communion this year. And the youth that we do have...no one really volunteers for a Mass that is over an hour and requires practice in the morning. I think this is the fifth year for my older son. But the Mass was lovely, and I enjoyed being there with my in-laws!
We didn't have 8 readings. Only one extra, Father said. I know there are some who think that they are cheated if they don't have all 8 readings and if the Easter Vigil doesn't last three hours. But our priest is wise, I think. As my mother-in-law simply put it, "I didn't need to hear all 8 readings." Our priest is wise, he is sensitive to the needs of his people, and he has to be up early the next morning for Easter Sunday Mass! The homily was brief and meaningful (always a good combo!). Don't look for Jesus in the empty tomb. Because he "ain't" there. But, if you are alert...if you have faith...if you seek...you will find Him in the Word...in the Scriptures. You will find Him in the sacraments of the church..."most supremely" in the Eucharist, but also in the others. You will find Him in the community...in others. There was an adult baptized, and another who was confirmed along with the young lady who was baptized.
We had fire, water, smoke (incense). The music was beautiful...especially the Litany of the Saints before the baptism. All in all, our celebration concluded in 90 minutes. Beautiful in its simplicity.
I could go on, detailing celebrations with family...but that will have to wait....
He is Risen! Definitely a reason to rejoice!