Sunday, March 23, 2008
Holy Thursday in Springfield Illinois
I spent the past week in Springfield Illinois. We had a seriously ill family member who required our support. In between hospital visits I spent time in the downtown area observing Holy Week.
This is not a strange city to me. I am from Chicago, for most of my life this was my State Capital. Lincoln’s home, his tomb, law office, the Old State Capital and the current State Capital Building are familiar to me. The new Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum I am not familiar with.
However, I was not here to be a tourist but the sites were all around. I felt like I had come home.
I observed Holy Thursday services at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Bishop George Lucas is an articulate, warm man with a good voice. The Cathedral is beautiful and when you step outside you see the State Capital Building. The church is only a few blocks from Lincoln’s Home and from the Governor’s Mansion. It is also a few blocks from the Presbyterian Church Lincoln attended. Still, I prefer my Cathedral in Fort Wayne, that is my home now.
One thing that struck me this past Thursday was an experience in the hospital. An adult granddaughter washed the hair of her hospitalized grandmother. While this is not an extraordinary occurrence it seemed to be symbolic of the day. During services we heard of the Last Supper, of the denials and the betrayal. We saw the Chrism Oils brought forth. However we also saw the bishop wash the feet of twelve congregants. Jesus, the ever-humble God was a servant. If we are to follow in His way than we must be servants. This granddaughter acted out of love and was a servant and by the reaction of the grandmother the act of love was not taken for granted. This was a simple and powerful lesson I hope to carry with me.
Peace and all good,