This morning after I turned on the lights in the church I was talking with Fr. Schmidt, a retired priest who concelebrates the early morning Mass on Sundays, when the lights in the church went out. Without explanation and all at once. And seven minutes before Mass began.
We still had lights in the sacristy and in the bell tower, but not in the church proper. The microphones were on and the air conditioner still blew, though we don't hardly need it today when the temperature is in the upper thirties (I'm not ready for winter!).
It was the strangest thing.
So, we concelebrated Mass in a darkened church, gradually becoming more illuminated as the sun continued to rise in the sky. It was great!
Now, mind you, Mass started at 7:30 a.m., so there was already enough light to see well enough.
I've always hated perfectly lit and blindingly bright churches. I much prefer a darker church.
Only three people commented about the lights after Mass, and all were in favor in keeping them off, whenever possible. They liked the darker because, as they said:
- it was more quiet and peaceful,
- you could see the beautiful windows better, and
- it will save money.
I couldn't agree more!
What do you think? Do you prefer a darker church or a well-lit church?
I'm off now to celebrate the 9:15 a.m. Mass, again without lights. Maybe I can just "forget" to turn the lights on in the future...