Saturday, April 7, 2007

Good-bye To All That

The Good Friday services are over, but the remembrance of the death of God and God in the tomb goes on until Sunday. In my youth, Good Friday was a solemn day, a somber day. We spent three hours in church in the afternoon. There was no radio, no movies, nothing that was fun. We knew were commemorating something serious, even as children.

Now church services are shorter; fewer activities are forbidden. In fact, earlier in the day yesterday, I attended a party. Alas and alack! It's still somewhat shocking to me that, in my very Roman Catholic area, a tradition has arisen to have a crawfish boil party on Good Friday. It seems strange to me, and it was difficult for me to participate when the custom began in my own family. What am I doing at a party on Good Friday - the most solemn day of the year? Since it was a family gathering, I'd go, but I felt uncomfortable.

This year as I mulled over the tradition in my mind, I thought to myself, "Is it right for me to be the Puritan in this instance? Should I go, but with a disapproving attitude? The members of my family are not getting up a posse to go murder people or rob houses. It's an innocent crawfish boil. Am I to suggest to my family that they're not to pass a good time on Good Friday? I think not."

I went yesterday with a good heart, and it was much better for me, and, no doubt, for the others also.


  1. Next time you are in conflict over attending a crawfish boil, let us know. I'm sure someone here would volunteer to go in your stead!

    I'd even forsake my very own kibbles and bits to be there if no one else steps up to the task! It's not easy being a Martyr for Mimi™, but I'll give it a go!


  2. Clumber, you are a crazy old dog. Next year I will call upon you to make the sacrifice.

  3. Um, um, good!

    It's almost time for Easter vigil here so i will wish you a Happy Easter.

  4. Well, I felt very righteous yesterday! I was a church twice yesterday! Being in the choir is a big job during Holy Week! The 3 hours from 12-3 is only 4or 5 guys doing the chanting of the Gospel, and me singing the solos between readings and hymns! I tell you whut! It was a big job, and I enjoyed all of it but listening yet again to the same two men who have been singing the Evangelist and Jesus for EVER! And each is awful in his own way. It doesn't make me want to listen to it very closely. I know it's not very Christian of me Mimi, but if I could phone in that 3 hours, so that I didn't have to suffer through that, I would. A crawfish boil sounds so good.

    We have our vigil at 5:30 AM tomorrow, and then at 10:00 we have the one all the C&Eers come to.
    In between we have breakfast. I love the vigil in the early morning, because as we get further into the service, the sun comes up and by the time it is Eucharist time, it's full daylight.
    At 10:00, we have a brass quintet that plays louder that we can sing. Subtlety is not their strong suit! But I love it. Easter is my favorite day of the Church year, as I guess it should be. I'm not too eloquent or articulate, but there it is.
    I will wait til tomorrow to use the "A" word. But I will say "Happy Easter, Mimi."

  5. So I see I said I was _a_ church yesterday. That was I was _at_ church!!!!!

  6. Happy Easter, Grandmere Mimi!

  7. Susan, I was not always pleased to spend 3 hours in church and to refrain from anything that was fun, believe me. It was the idea of a party on Good Friday that was strange to me.

    The priests and the choir most certainly work harder during the Easter and pre-Easter liturgies.

    Perhaps next year you could make a recording and phone it in.

    Happy Easter to all!

  8. Now here is love, Grandmère, Mimi. You willingly picked up your cross, put aside mourning, and went to a party.

    You did what Jesus did.

  9. Excellent post.

    I was having a birthday party for Jenna yesterday, and feeling a bit the same way.

    But, I don't think Jesus would like the idea of a party being cancelled due to his death, which we all know is only temporary - especially not for a six year old.

    The move I think on it, his death is really about life, and the celebration of life. (Or else, I'm entirely deluded...which could definitely be!)

    A blessed Easter to you Mimi.

  10. Yes, I made the sacrifice, my friends. Those of you who have not grown up in the Roman Catholic Church don't understand about the indelible mark that's left on the soul, especially us elders, who grew up when the rules were much stricter. Eileen, you had it easy.

    Look at poor KJ how he was marked by his evangelical upbringing.

    Anyhoo, Happy Easter everyone.

  11. No, no poor Kj, but you are quite correct regarding how are upbrining affects us.

    Perhaps, in some ways, the GLBT experience makes it easier to let go of the past, since many of us did not choose to leave that place, but the choice was made for us.

    I look back and shake my head, but thanks be to God, have no regret. Now I get to be a post-evangelical gay boy in the Epsicopal Church, which makes all sort of people, left and right shake their heads. What could be more fun than that?

  12. What could be more fun than that?

    Absolutely nothing, KJ, my friend, absolutely nothing.

  13. There is a lack of good crawfish in Indiana. I may find myself wandering NOLA-ward some Good Friday.

  14. Greor3ge, even if you could find crawfish in Indiana, they would not taste the same. It's the water.

    If you came on Good Friday, you could walk the streets, and it would not be long before you'd see a family outside boiling crawfish. It's something that's best done outside, because of smells and mess. If you seemed to be a fairly decent sort, they'd probably ask you to join them.

    It's not just NOLA; it's all over south Louisiana.


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