Monday, April 24, 2017

"And there's another country, I've heard of long ago"*

So I went with my parents to Easter Mass at their church because I didn't have enough time to go to Mass at my church in Hartford, go home, make the hors d'oeuvres I was responsible for, AND get myself to my sister's house in the 40 minutes it takes to get there and be on time for dinner.

It was a very nice service. The children's choir was performing the music at this Mass, and they were doing a very fine job (despite singing everything in a high register that I haven't been able to reach since my middle 30s.) Something happened during Communion that "caught me for a loop", as my friend MMH would say.

As the congregation stood up to go to Communion, it was announced that the hymn would be "O God Beyond All Praising", which I didn't know. Or rather I THOUGHT I didn't know because all of a sudden the organist is playing "I Vow to Thee, My Country". At a Catholic Mass. In the United States. In a predominantly Polish-American church. My dad poked me in the back as I got in the communion line, and we shared a little pleased look.

This will surprise no one: as I sung the "proper" lyrics in my head, I teared up a bit.

* "I Vow to Thee, My Country" lyric by Sir Cecil Spring Rice/music by Gustav Holst

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