Last night began with getting ready for the Easter Vigil with my parents, brohter and other friends scattered in the pews for Mass at St James Chapel. I had just returned from visiting a trip with my mother and my brother Simon. We went first to my sister Mary’s house where I gave my nieces and nephews five simple Easter baskets which I had prepared and then we wathced and ate snacks and chatted among the grown-ups and I dyed one egg while the little ones and their necessary adult supervisors dyed eggs in bulk. Then we went to Kisinoaks to visit my bedridden maternal grandfather.
The Easter Vigil Mass in the Roman Catholic Church is a magnificent and very beautiful ritual. This is true even in a little country chapel like St. James Chapel. The seven or so Readings from Sacred Scriptures, sung psalms, ritual of fire, marking of the Paschal light, lighting of candles, ritual of water and the prayers are all quite impressive. I went to the Good Friday services at St. Mary Magdalen in Abbeville and it is a much larger and more formal church but all churches are rendered special by these rituals.
We had only one Confirmation and no Baptisms in our small congregation but the mass still lasted quite a while. This morning I rose later than usual but not very late. I made the coffee as I usually do and shortly after the few of us had gathered in the living room I read one of the gospel accounts of the Resurrection and we sang a few hymns. Then we had a reveal of the Easter baskets belonging to those present and then we fought or “pac-pac”-ed Easter eggs and ate the losing eggs for breakfast with our Easter candies.
Later people began to arrive and more baskets were given out. My sisters Mary and Sarah were not here. Nor were there families. My siblings: Susanna, Joseph and John Paul were here with spouse and children. My parents, Simon and I completed the family and we had eight friends. For us this was not a very large holiday group and we had no extended family. The meal was rather fine I thought but not so formal and we had no servants although some friends are sort of part of the household and work here in nondomestic postions. My mother did all the cooking (or nearly so). We had turkey, lamb, broiled potatoes and veggies in gravy, rice dressing, plain rice, mint jellies and cranberry sauce. We had desserts not prepared by my mother that were little chocolate birds nests with candied eggs. We also had my mother’s pink bricks– a frozen fruit salad with a family provenance of some generations.
There was an Easter egg hunt after the meal for the children and we were otherwise engaed in visiting and cleaning up for ourselves. Everyone has gone home except Simon and my parents and I. I am relaxing in front of the television. I have left a few things out but it was a nice quiet Easter Sunday. I did attend to some online correspondence. I wish all of my readers a happy Easter.