Thursday, April 02, 2015

The things one misses

by not being Anglican: David Warren's Maundy Thursday column includes a liturgical detail I'd not heard of before:
In my old Anglican days, when I was a parishioner in an extremely High church, the Tenebrae was sung on Maundy Thursday. It was, for an unedifying reason, a liturgical event I looked forward to. The lights were extinguished one by one; and then the strepitus sounded in a tremendous clash, as the last candle in the sanctuary was extinguished. On this one day in the year, polite Anglican people — who queue so nicely for Communion row by row — were instructed to leave the church “in disorder.” In the darkness, the parishioners would collide, shove, step on each other’s toes — all in the proper liturgical spirit. One might wait all year for one’s opportunities.

(Most of the article is about education and the supremacy of theory, and is, as usual, worth reading.)

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