Thursday, July 15, 2010

Capitolo ends, Mass begins

Today's 7:30 a.m. Mass at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre was a special one.

The Franciscans had just completed their ten-day Capitolo Custodiale, their Chapter meeting at which important regional decisions were made.
(They even wrote a daily blog about it, in Italian and English.)

Benches were taken out of storage and set up in the rotunda.

The Franciscan fathers lined up for their turn to enter the edicule, the little room containing the tomb of Jesus.
I try to imagine how special it was for them to receive Communion in that holiest of Christian holy places.

Raised hands during the words of institution.

The readings from Scripture.
In 1342 Pope Clement VI declared the Franciscans the official custodians of the Holy Places in the name of the Catholic Church.
To learn more about how this works in modern Israel, please see
Custodia di Terra Santa has a website explaining their activities, and even a Facebook page.
For more about the church, you can click on my label "Holy Sepulchre."


Pietro said...

Dina, maybe will you become a Christian in future? I'm joking of course, but "never say never". Your posts are so passionate and heartfelt.

Dina said...

Pietro, I will say "never!" so don't hold your breath waiting.
If I seem to post a lot of Christian religion on the blog, it is because it is not allowed to photograph in Orthodox Jewish synagogue services or on Shabbat at the Western Wall, etc. etc., so I don't have many such photos.
Plus, I'll admit, I enjoy watching the high drama of the Church.

Hilda said...

I wish the new leadership of the Franciscans there all the best. I hope they are all good men.

JM said...

Great portraits! I especially like the middle shot.

Pietro said...

Dina, of course mine was not a hope, it was just a summer devising.
What do you mean by "the high drama of the Church"?

Dina said...

Hilda, thank you. They have a big and difficult job, the leaders in this region.

JM, glad you like the middle one. I do too.

Pietro, excuse me, I had meant to add a smiley to my first comment to you to soften my tone. :)

The "drama of the Church"? I first heard that good description from my Rabbi in America.
And Christians describe the high church rituals as "smells and bells"!

Usually when I visit a church service it is in a language unknown to me. (The Franciscan Mass was in Italian.) So I can concentrate on the sound and not the meaning of the spoken and sung words. If I understood the language, I would get bogged down in intellectually disagreeing with what I heard.

The drama is all about mystery, sacred space and sacred time.
All the things we don't have or need in the synagogue, like colorful vestments, incense, organ music, church bells and tiny bells, etc.
Then there are all the oil lamps and candles around in the ancient churches . . . .

Gregorian chant is my favorite.

Leif Hagen said...

A great collection of photos from their special mass! I'm not in EAGAN right now but visiting my wife's relatives.... nice to catch up on your blog today and putting on hundreds of kilometers!