Narcissus' Echo

Thoughts, tears, rants, ruminations, hopes, fears, love(s), and prayers of just another being passing through this wracked sphere...

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A round peg in a world of square holes...

Friday, April 14, 2006

Good Friday

As per tradition, today's service was bare: there were no instruments, no bells, no piano, just unaccompanied chants (which actually made it seem more difficult as faults are not so easily glossed over).

The Veneration of the Cross was touching. The laity actually voluntarily took turns to bear the weight of the heavy wooden cross in order for others in the congregation to venerate it.

I had a spot of fun when we sung the chant refrain for the Veneration. The refrain,

Draw near, O LORD, our God, graciously receive us.
Humbly we bow before you.

accompanies the choir master singing Psalm 22: 1-11.

Well, the refrain is sung in parts. As I was standing right beside the basses, and possessed the range to sing the second section in tenor or bass, I chose to alternate between the two each time the refrain comes up. The tenor on my right was giving me repeated looks that seemed to convey, "WTF are you doing?"


Discovered that some of the choir members shared common interests with me: one is a mountain biker and another is an avid photographer. I guess we will have more to talk about from now on.

One event marred today's event though. I will not go into details. Those closest to me already know the details. As for the rest, I guess I'm "not in your circle," eh? (Or is it more accurate to say that you are not in my circle?)

I was fuming. I could have struck back harshly.

My ego was pricked. My defenses bristled. I was ready to fight. I was ready to summon all my learning, all my knowledge of hurtful words to hurl at this acquaintance who so dared disrespect me--for no reason, no reason at all. She clearly deserved it. Vengeance is mine.

But I didn't.

Then, during the long period of meditation in between our performance, I had the opportunity to reflect and think it through. Swallow the ego. Listen to what God is trying to tell you; what He is trying to show you, with a tiny sting--a small lesson--instead of a big, painful slap. Like a puppy falling down a single step learns to respect heights and edges. It may sting, but far better be it than falling off a cliff as the first lesson.

I am no Holly Roller, but I took it as a sign. I confided my turmoil to two of my closest friends last night: my dilemma; the temptation. Now I know my instinct--guided by reason--was correct:

Never pee where you swim.

Spirituality should never mix with amor.
Violate this rule and you will find the temple of your sanctuary in ruins when passion cools and romance fades.

You enter the house of the LORD for one reason and one reason only--to worship Him. Do not sully the consecrated ground with the base urging of your loins.

In His infinite mercy, I am spared the larger fall.
(One can read this statement in so many different ways).

Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto.


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