Day #13 (strictly speaking)
We're nearly in the home stretch now. These people never sleep- the Greek nuns have literally taken all night to just mop a small ring-shaped corridor around this place. It's incredible. Everyone rang their bells at around 11:30 PM, the Greeks have incensed everything in this place twice since then. So have the Coptics and the Armenians, actually. They've been singing their Mass the last thirty minutes, I think. Even the Latin priests all got up and prayed Matins and Lauds this evening around midnight-ish for thirty or forty minutes. They chanted the whole thing in Latin.
I read and meditated upon the Easter Vigil readings for a while and prayed the Sorrowful Mysteries on Calvary. I think I'm going to wander around for a little while then try to almost finish out the night by reading the Gospel of Luke. We'll see what happens.
I've been doing fine thus far, but I'm fading. My mood is good, but the singing and the bright artificial lights are starting to get to me...
(Note: I did not have another journal entry until after I was back in Rome. The evening finished at 4:00 AM and they opened the doors to let us out and let the pilgrims waiting for entry into the church. There were several guys from our pilgrimage group, looking to get a little last minute prayer in there, so it was like the NAC changing of the guard. We went back, I showered, then we got a few hours of sleep, packed, went to Mass, and headed back to Rome. All went well enough- I was feeling a little sick and was totally sapped after the previous evening, but it was all 1000% worth it. Praise God!)