Saturday, December 24, 2011

Lessons and Carols

Just went to the Christmas eve service at the Episcopal Church in Larchmont. After all one reads about the waning of the traditional denominations, I felt like I was doing the church a favor by putting on a jacket and showing up. I needn't have worried. The little church was packed to the gills with dolled up WASPs.  Here in Westchester, the ruling class lives.

And they put on a nice little pageant, the kids did. Confident 7-year olds in front of the mike.

The odd thing was that the carols differed.  "Away in a manger" was sung to a completely different melody.  "Go Tell It on the Mountain" was very officious and formal.  I grew up singing:

Once I was a sinner,
I sinned both night and day.
I asked the Lord to help me,
And he showed me the way...

Go tell it on the mountain yatta yatta

Here they picked other verses:

While shepherds kept their watching
o'er silent flocks by night,
behold, throughout the heavens
there shone a holy night.. yatta yatta

And some other voice closely tied to the Xmas story. The point is, it was very formal, nothing about sin or salvation, as we had in our southern rendition, which certainly felt more influenced by Baptist, Methodist, proto-charismatic traditions where the emphasis was much more on the personal connection to Christ, the Lord, the whole nine.

At the end of the day, I don't feel a strong need to go back to church anytime soon.  I got my taste for now.

No comments: