Saturday, April 11, 2009

Great big Paschal Candles

Father Sean, has some posts on the Sarum Rite Triduum, today he writes on the blessing of the Paschal Candle. I remember reading years ago Dr Rock, that extraordinary 19th century priest of Southwark writing about Paschal Candles weighing several hundred weight and then being raised on a "pasch post" and being so tall they had to be lit from the clerestory and remaining alight until the Ascension. He then goes on to speak about the economic havoc wreaked by the Reformation on the bees wax industry. Honey, I think he says, was a by-product. I like to think of of pre-reformation Catholic cuisine as being sweet, whereas Protestant cuisine was sour. If Rock is right, did the Reformation lead directly to slavery on sugar plantations in the Americas?


alban said...

Fr Ray: I have always believed that if a symbol is worth doing, it should be done well (and that is why I loath the cheap plaster statues that one finds in some churches). We have a brand new Paschal Candle every year, and it's the thickest and largest that we can find. I remember that, in one parish, the holder was unable to contain the new Paschal Candle and another had to be especially made; it was beautifully carved by a 17 year old lad from the secondary school. What is the point in having a skimpy Paschal Candle in a large church building? Christ is Risen, let His light be seen!

Thank you for the links concerning the Sarum Rite. I do think the Church in the UK should have gone with this rite when the hierarchies were restored; it's great that there is a renewed interest.

A blessed Easter Vigil to all.

Fr Anthony said...

Here are another couple of links for the Use of Sarum. I do everything I can to encourage its revival:

The e-mail list has been very quiet of late, but has interesting things in the archives and files section.

There is a Sarum group on Facebook (I'm not the moderator), that has potential.

Fr. Anthony Chadwick (Traditional Anglican Communion)

Dilly said...

That is an interesting aside about the honey industry, and it certainly holds water. How ironic that the switch to sugar should have given Elizabeth Tudor (who was one of the few who could afford it before the trade took off) such rotten teeth!

More disastrous still was the effect of abolishing the free health and social services that were the only safety net for the poor. Imagine if the NHS and DSS disappeared overnight today - with their resources and property either destroyed or privatised into the hands of Gordon's henchmen. When I see the miserable little clusters of almshouses that these people built as their sole contribution to the welfare of the poor, it is a salutary lesson. No wonder poor Queen Mary was relentlessly "briefed against" in her lifetime and afterwards by those who did not wish to lose their privatisation windfall...

The Lord’s descent into the underworld

At Matins/the Office of Readings on Holy Saturday the Church gives us this 'ancient homily', I find it incredibly moving, it is abou...