Wednesday, December 25, 2013
Fr. A. has been working double duty for weeks, with no end in sight (funeral coming, then Sunday, then blessing some chalk on Epiphany). We have been living on cookies and cold coffee for longer than we can recall. We could really use a little Ordinary Time right now.
Still, something curious happened last night. The cynical preacher's view of the Vigil of Christmas is that people come to hear the familiar story recapitulated, a touching fable or two, and then to light a few candles and sing "Silent Night." Anything much different risks rebellion in the pews.
Moved by heaven knows what imp of the perverse, we decided to take our sermon in a different direction. It's all a blur now, but we recall sharing the semantic range of the Greek verb "symballo," digressing on the fact that "host" is the word of an army -- militia coelestibus -- and blathering on about the arrangement of Israelite forces at the Battle of Midian. Oh, and some long-winded anecdote about providing emergency pastoral care at the DMV.
The faithful actually seemed to enjoy this -- quite a bit, apparently -- although Heaven only knows why. A Christmas miracle!