Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I Kinda Feel Like Jerry Seinfeld

I had a funeral today for the mother of a coworker. I got to the church early and watched the servers light the candles. They made a production out of it that would have astounded Busby Berkeley.

First a little background, for those of you unfamiliar with the routine. I actually served my first Mass in this church- back when we were still Altar Boys- and lit these same candle stands many times. You grab the combo device that holds a taper on one side to light the candles and has an extinguishing cap on the other, light the taper and go to work. The candle on this combo device is long enough that you can reach 4-5 feet past the end of your arm. A 3 foot candle in a 3 foot candle stand on a 3 foot altar is no problem (or wasn't) for your standard 10 year old.

Today they were double teaming the candles.

Sort of.

They had a short boy and a taller girl (by almost a foot), both about 12 or 13. The young man came out of the sacristy first, carrying a small step stool; the young lady followed with the combo device. Our young man went to the altar and stretched up to the first of the candles and removed it from the candle holder (he could barely reach it- he was on tiptoe, on the stool and was able to have maybe the bottom 6 inches of the actual 3 foot candle he could reach. After he pulled it out of the holder he lowered it so the wick was eye level to our young lady.

At this point I figured the wick was broken or bent and he was helping out his fellow server. After the candle was lit he put it back in the holder. I was afraid he would set something on fire; holding a lit 3 foot candle- which is good inch and half to 2 inches in diameter- by base and trying to fit it back into the candle holder. After he had replaced it, I figured the show was over.

Then they proceeded to light ALL EIGHT CANDLES on the High Altar the same way. I was amazed. I don’t attend this church often, so I don’t know if this was standard procedure or not, but if this standard procedure, who ever developed it needs to rethink the directive; unless they have a large fire policy on the building. Absolutely nothing about it made sense.

I kept thinking; just how surreptitiously can I get a picture or two of this? Video would have netted me $100,000 on a funny video show.

Why do I feel like Seinfeld? Aren't I making something out of nothing?

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