But we celebrated lives and did the stuff in a couple of places and then did a couple of baptisms - two beautiful babes (one being the Mum who just shone) and the younger of the pair managed the whole event without crying when I got him wet. It was an odd service with convoluted and unwieldy liturgy and no oil for the chrismation - and, of course, for once my oil stock was left at home - so I did a virtual signing and explained how oil, water and light were the key elements of the service,
We missed bits - after all, how many responses can you insert into a block of text before it gets to be worthless - and we laid the tracks as the train was running and in the end, did something sequitur and theologically sorted.
Phase one of the day lasted six hours - but it felt like one, the sign of a great day - phase two took the shape of a bit of pastoral engagement and raced through and then, wonder of wonders, I had an evening off so I chilled with the family.
But what of today?
I learnt that misshaped liturgy is something unprintable to me and something of an obstruction to those outside the Church who are subjected to it. It's stupid, lazy and arrogant to assume that we need to dumb down our services because people are thick. It's pathetic to visit a church and talk down to or demean the congregation because of our own lack of liturgy, theology and experience - the fault too often lies in us.
Lord, on a day when we celebrated the second Adam,
A day when we remembered what sin has done,
A day when we celebrated new life in Christ,
For the bits where I was a stumbling block - I'm sorry
For the bits where I was a light in the darkness - I'm thankful
For those who heard the Gospel preached - I'm hopeful.
Feed me, forgive me and lead me deeper into You.