I thought I'd died and gone to heaven, so beautiful was the liturgy for both ordination (photo gallery at the Catholic Miscellany) and first Solemn High Mass of Fr. Renaurd West. Beautiful Gregorian chant and Monteverdi polyphonic music, with all the smells and bells. I have always loved incense and the first time I was at a High Mass, it was the incense that evoked memories of long ago of a cathedral in India.
Even though these Masses were crowded, I did not have that usual sense of wanting to get away from everybody. I've noticed that since we were received into the Church, I am becoming more and more comfortable being with people I do not know. I see them all as children of God. Even the ones who annoy me. This is a great transformation, and must be a gift from the Holy Spirit. Of course, my natural inclination is still to be alone, but I do find myself enjoying fellowship with others. I am looking forward to a quiet and restful Sunday, and Mass, of course.
My friend, Marcia Hoehne, a terrific writer with an analytical brain, developed recovery times for introverts. How do my fellow-introverts cope with large crowds, speaking engagements, etc.?