Something pretty cool happened recently at Mass. A pretty mild Sunday rainstorm somehow knocked out the power right in the middle of the celebration. All the lights went out and suddenly we were all in the dark other than the light coming in through the stained glass windows. Suddenly, it seemed as if we had gone back in time about two hundred years. I couldn’t help but wonder how magnificent those stained glass windows must have been to someone who had not been fully desensitized by all the “flashing bright lights” of our current time. I imagine it would feel like Heaven had come to Earth. It was also a reminder to me that that was exactly what was happening at that very moment in our very Church.
I was slowly transported back to the present as everyone started dusting off the flashlight app on their smartphone. That was when I started to look around and see what was going on. People just started helping each other out, shining lights on hymnals so people could keep singing, alter servers positioned with candles to light the way, and the band played on…The choir never seemed to break stride and the band kept playing despite the darkness throwing them this little distraction. They got a well deserved applause at the end, one of the loudest I have heard in the Church. And just to boot, they threw in “Rain Down” for their next song.
I don’t want to over dramatize it, but it was neat to see people spontaneously helping each other out. Let’s open these doors to bring in some light…lets put these candles here…I’ll light your hymnal…let me help that older person who might not see as well…let’s go get the flashlights…hey let’s just keep going...
Yes, let’s keep going. What’s really important? The Eucharist, our community, loving one another. As my Priest said after the celebration, “Well this is how we did it for the first 1800 years or so, we don’t need any stinking electricity.” Well said Father!