So seminary has, once again, gotten the best of me. The best laid plans… The pace of my work has slowed to a crawl since Saturday. Palm Sunday saw me leaving the seminary around 8:30 and getting back around 8:30 p.m., at which point I worked on a paper for a few hours before crashing. Monday morning we had 3 and a half hours of chapel: 3rd, 6th, 9th hours; Typica and Presanctified Liturgy. We also read long portions of the Gospel of Luke at the Hours as is a tradition here (and elsewhere?). The afternoon was eaten up by phone calls and planning and I suddenly found myself getting in the car with the bishop and two other seminarians (all the others were in another car) to drive to my parish assignment on Long Island for a long Bridegroom Matins. We got back to the seminary after 11 p.m. at which point I crashed.
Today saw another round of 3rd, 6th, & 9th hours; Typica, and Presanctified Liturgy in the morning, then a brief music rehearsal, another page of my paper written, and then once again getting in the car to drive to Archdiocese Headquarters to pick up the bishop and a seminarian and then drive to the church in South Plainfield, NJ for Bridegroom Matins. I got back a little after 11 p.m. tonight. And I am about ready to crash, although I absolutely have to finish this paper tonight before I do so.
Tomorrow we’ll be back in chapel in the morning from 9-12:30 again, then I’ll have a couple hours to try and squeeze some work in before heading to HQ again and then to another parish in Bergenfield, NJ with the bishop for Holy Unction. Thursday morning we’ll be traveling with the bishop to a parish for the Liturgy of the Lord’s Supper, and in the evening to the parish in Little Falls, NJ for the Service of the 12 Gospels (the longest service of the Orthodox liturgical year). Good Friday morning four of us seminarians will be traveling with the bishop to Florida, NY for Royal Hours, then driving to Poughkeepsie for Vespers in the afternoon and Lamentations in the evening. We’ll stay overnight in Poughkeepsie and have Vesperal Liturgy in the morning on Holy Saturday there. Then we four and the bishop drive to Allentown, PA on Saturday afternoon and are at the church there for Pascha services Saturday night into the wee hours of Sunday. Then we come back to the seminary late Sunday morning.
Welcome to the life of a seminarian in Holy Week. Please pray for me, as I pray for you, and ask God to grant strength during this time. Updates will come as fortitude allows.