I just returned from Tenebrae, over two and a half hours of psalms and lessons. Really the depth of the old Triduum Office is beyond comprehension. The psalms are about battle, liberation, forgiveness, and defeat of one's enemies. The first lessons are the Lamentations of Jeremiah for the fall of the chosen people, of Jerusalem. The second are of St Augustine on how God can redirect evil for the good. And the first are form St Paul on the Last Supper and the Eucharist. The responsories paint the darkness of Judas' betrayal behind the broader themes of the night and contrast strongly with the festive, celebratory nature of the Mass of the day. And of course the extinction of the candles, leaving us in darkness and the "earthquake" (smashing books) that ends the night. It made quite an impression on myself and many others.
During the strepitus a friend bashed a book containing hymns such as Holy God We Praise Thy Name while I
took out my rage lamented Christ's betrayal with a 1962 Missal, possibly damaging the spine.
Tomorrow off to the Maronites for Mandy Thursday, the washing of feet, and a night of Confession. Good Friday Vespers with the shroud burial and Jerusalem Mattins of Holy Saturday the following night. And Divine Liturgy of Pascha with the Melkites in Houston Saturday night/Sunday morning.