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So much for shortcuts

I'm not a very good Catholic, I must admit. I believe in God, the resurrection, communion, the forgiveness of sins, life everlasting, and so on. Catholics know the creed.

I have my issues with the Pope and the hierarchy of the Church. But I do enjoy Mass, especially in Italy in a gorgeous church.

Alas, I use too much of my brainpower to devise shortcuts and today, it bit me in the behind. I cleverly decided that instead of forgoing my usual Sunday morning gallons-of-coffee-and-the-New-York-Times routine for Easter Mass, I'd attend the Saturday afternoon vigil Mass.

I also decided I'd go to a very small, neighborhood church where the priests can celebrate Mass in about 45 minutes. I like efficiency.

But, as usual, my scheming backfired. Mass lasted two hours!! OMG! I was gobsmacked. And it served me right.

First, there was the fire. Well, it wasn't exactly a fire. But someone decided it would be fun if, as Mass began, the priest directed the entire congregation to gather at the back of the church and start small fires. Well, okay, the idea was that each person would light a small candle. But there were a lot of shakey senior citizens, and of course, we congregated in front of the rear exit doors. In fact, the ONLY exit doors in the church. Still reeling from setting my dinner party ablaze a few weeks ago, I was certain this could only end in tears. Who comes up with these ideas?

After that bad start, the choir kicked in. But this seemed to be the dominatrix choir from hell. I mean, they took over the Mass. No one else could sing. No one else could give the usual responses. The priest had trouble getting a word in edgewise with this choir. Old folks began to doze off. Some left before communion.

I've learned my lesson. Next year, I'll haul myself off to Sunday Mass Easter morning as I should. And pray there's no choir.....

Comments (5)


Happy Easter, Sandra.

I found your post on taking shortcut/aka no-frills-mass funny.

I have given up on short service during lent. First there is the (4 pager on the missal) gospels for Palm Sunday and Good Friday. Then the priest decides he needs a homily on top of those... so I have been in two hour masses lately!

I am thinking these earned me some plenary indulgences, I am sure.

What a fantastic description! I could picture every moment of your 2 hour mass.

I like Easter Vigil! I actually really like the fire and all that. And in the church I usually attend in DC, it can last clsoe to FOUR hours! Yes, from eight to almost midnight!

If they only had coffee and the NYtimes in the pews.


Okay - even I, the Jew, know that the secret to Easter mass is to go to the very first one in the morning (by us, 7:45). Why? Because the next one starts at 8:45, so you know the end is always in site.

But hey, no sympathy here, our normal Saturday morning service is 2.5 - 3 hours give or take - every single week.

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