Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Eve in Louisiana and a Look at Christmas Eve Past


Christmas Eve 2012 on Canyon Drive, Santa Fe, New Mexico



Last year, my mother and sister and I were in Santa Fe for Christmas. The folks at the Silver Saddle Motel were so kind to invite us and some other motel guests to join them on the traditional farolito walk on Canyon Drive.

Today, Christmas Eve in Lafayette, I remembered how special it was to enter the St. Joseph Apache Mission Church in Mescalero, New Mexico, during Christmas season last year. My mother and I visited the church once when it was empty, and we also attended Mass. 

St. Joseph Apache Mission Church, Mescalero, New Mexico

What a beautiful space.

So today, it made sense to me to attend a Mass this year also.

St. Mary Mother of the Church, Lafayette, Louisiana


A new friend is in the choir at St. Mary Mother of the Church, so that's where I went.  Heard graceful song and breathed deeply of the exotic frankincense.


St. Mary Mother of the Church, Lafayette, Louisiana

 
... and then, I thought, what the hell - no I mean heck, because, shhh, we're in church! - what about going to midnight Mass?


Our Lady of Wisdom, Lafayette, Louisiana

For this, I selected Our Lady of Wisdom Church on St. Mary's Boulevard, on the University of Louisana - Lafayette campus.

I'm so glad I did.

Our Lady of Wisdom, Lafayette, Louisiana


The church was full but not overcrowded. The altar is an open one where there is seating in front and in back. Or better said, the altar is set perpendicular to the attendees.

Our Lady of Wisdom, Lafayette, Louisiana


The music, vocal and instrumental, was exquisite, and the acoustics or sound system or both, superb. Violins, cello, deep drums, soaring voices en masse and solo and twinned. It was possible to close one's eyes and simply dwell in the sound .... there were a few moments where it felt like being in the lapping water in the hot springs of Truth and Consequences.

Our Lady of Wisdom, Lafayette, Louisiana


The reader had a mellifluous voice; the priest(s) chanted the liturgy. The incense and its attendant smoke rounded out the sensory experience for the eyes, ears, and nose.

Our Lady of Wisdom, Lafayette, Louisiana
 

What a satisfying Christmas Eve in my new land.
    




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