On Good Friday, and again on Holy Saturday 2018, I joined about a dozen or so parishioners and clergy in chanting the Office of Readings and Morning Prayer in the Sacred Heart Cathedral, Hamilton NSW, as the ORDO recommends.
I thought it would be a Tenebrae Service, but clearly, I didn’t understand what that is.
No. It was a liturgical service of two important hours of the Liturgy of the Hours for Holy Week, chanted ever so slowly and beautifully, and very prayerful.
I really enjoyed the liturgy, especially the slow and reverent chanting, which made it so much easier to attend to what was being said and, of course, to whom we were praying. Often, whether praying the hours alone or even when reciting with others, I find we tend to ‘rush’ a bit. These two Hours took almost 60 minutes to chant, and that seemed perfectly appropriate. I think that’s a compelling lesson for me…slow down! It’s important to dwell lovingly on the content of Scripture, letting God’s word penetrate our defences and expand our hearts. It seems to me that’s what our Carmelite ‘Rule of St Albert’ is urging us to do. “…die ac nocte in lege Domini meditantes et in orationibus vigilantes”
(cf Rule,  Each one of you is to stay in his own cell or nearby, pondering the Lord’s law day and night and keeping watch at his prayers unless attending to some other duty.)
Another pleasing element is the strong sense of being Church…the praying Church…when liturgy is performed well.
I like it.
I wish all my brothers and sisters in Carmel and their loved ones, together with visitors to our blogsite, a blessed and holy Easter.