Something wonderful about the organ played in a huge basilica filled with people. There is in the deepest notes a call to the gut of the listener. The huge and rather ugly modern space is filled with many people. There are people who come for the spectacle, the music, the marking of the day. There are others who come with sincere faith. They were easy to spot last night. They knew the responses in the service, they knew when to stand or sit, they held up their hands and sang or recited at times. There was a feeling of the Middle Ages at some moments. When the huge choir came up the main aisle and everyone instinctively stood in silence. The service was sung by celebrants, who to my taste, were a little too concerned with their ” performance” but when the choir sang, the body responded. You can’t make the hair on your arms rise. It just does when the moment is right.
A strange Christmas. Most of my family overseas, going to a,strange midnight service at the request of my beloved daughter, running out in the cold air afterwards with not a flake of snow as we hailed cabs in vain. A different but wonderful experience. I know I am privileged to have it and look forward to the next one with anticipation and love for the season.