By the grace of God, Easter Sunday was the second time of my adult life that I was priveledged to experience Mass in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite...
And OH how I loved it! In spite of my longing for and predjudice in favor of the old mass, I was honestly unprepared for the way I was "drawn in" to the mass spiritually. In spite of not completely being able to keep up at times, I still felt like I was drawn in to the mass, almost organically. I suppose that is the way it is supposed to be, after all. The mass we describe as "according to the Missal of 1962" is actually the result of cenuries of evolution, all leading to a rite that could "draws in, organically" the generations who lived and died long before the idea of a "personal missal" which they could use to follow along. I found that my curiosity and desire to learn was the only reason to really follow along with the missal at all! I felt a part of the mass - the mystery - in a way I never have since I was a small child. I could go on, but it was beautiful and timeless and awe-inspiring and more words won't do any more to describe it.
As the saying goes - you had to be there.
As I said, this was my second "adult" TLM. My first TLM, last year at Our Lady of Grace in Greensboro (whre my daughter attends school) was a "special mass" which was attended by a massive crowd and while amazing (as I reported) it was not nearly as close or as intimate as what I experienced yesterday. Yesterday's mass was one of the regular bi-weekly masses which are offered at St. Benedict the Moor Church in Winston-Salem, NC. The building itself was small, intimate, and pretty. I cannot imagine a more perfect venue to experience the Mass of Ages "up close and personal". In fact, thanks to the enthusiasm of my daughter (who practically ran up the aisle), I was seated in the very first pew! This led to some embarassment at the very beginning of the mass, though, as my desire to show her the Missal and where we were in the mass (she loves to read along) led to a momentary distraction, leaving me (and her) standing when we should have been sitting - IN THE FRONT PEW.
But nonetheless I can honestly say: Ladies and Gentlemen, I have seen The Mass, and it works.