At 11:30 PM on Christmas Eve, the sisters' schola began to sing. Each hymn reflected something of the mystery of GOD becoming flesh in JESUS. The caroling is our last preparation for the birth of our Savior in time. At the stroke of midnight the Chapel bell began to ring. "In the silence of night the Word leaped from heaven (Isaiah)." Then, the Christmas Proclamation was read. The Proclamation is an ancient text that situates the birth of Christ in human history. This year, youngest member in rank was asked to read it - a great honor. Flanked by two candle bearers, Karen stood in the center of the darkness - her face aglow with candlelight. At its conclusion every light in the Chapel is turned on - a symbolic reminder that the Word is light in our darkness. So beautiful!
In keeping with this idea, our dear friends, the Guldens, placed a hunded luminaries up and down our driveway. They burned bright as we tucked ourselves in around 2:30 and were still aglow when I woke at 6:30. Christmas morning came and many friends joined us for the morning Mass. After dinner at noon, most of us went to bed for a bit. I think we're still suffering a liturgical "hangover," but the beauty and joy of these days are so worth it. If you'd like to hear the schola sing, visit me on Facebook [Sister Vicki]. There are several short video clips.
Merry Christmas, dear friends...peace and love!
- Sister Vicki