Sunday, November 15, 2009
As I prepare for my role as thurifer at Sunday Eucharist this morning, this ceremony comes to my mind.
Our Jewish elder brothers and sisters in faith save all their high church for the dinner table and the home. I love ceremonies with lots of fire, fluid, and darkness, and this one is very beautiful. This ceremony ends the Sabbath every Saturday night as soon as 3 stars are visible in the sky. A candle with multiple wicks is lighted and blessed. A kiddush cup is filled with wine to overflowing. Some spicy fragrance contained in a besamim is blessed and passed around as a reminder of the sweetness of God's rest. The celebrant looks at his fingers by the light of the candle, and the shadow in his palm, and then opens his hand to dispel it. He takes a drink from the cup, and then extinguishes the candle in the spillover wine. Then the lights come back on.
I wonder how many other Episcopalians out there used to work in a Judaica shop? We sold all kinds of sets for this ceremony, in addition to the candles.
Posted by Counterlight at Sunday, November 15, 2009