01 October 2010

A Permanent Fixture at Tyn Church

On Sunday evening at 9pm Megan and I went to Mass at the Tyn Cathedral in Prague's Old Town Square. We ventured there the day before to peek inside and decided to come back for a service.

There was a man, possibly a "sidekick" priest who stood in the back as the tourists entered the church during visiting hours. He had the most terrifying scowl I have ever seen an human being use. His right eye was a different color than the left and his eyelid scrunched a bit as if a fishing hook got stuck somewhere in there. As each person entered, he would almost grimace every time. We were too much for him. We treaded holy ground and he seemed to abhor the fact that most of us didn't care.

By the time Megan, Kristen, and I walked to the altar of the church we heard the most horrendous shout from behind. Apparently, someone had tried to take a picture of the apse and he had caught them. His yell echoed through the pews of the cathedral, around the arches, and dispersed through the altar to the most sacred part of the church. This happened three times. Each one louder and more agitated than the last. Instead of peace and reflection, the church was filled with this man's contempt.

We enjoyed our visit though. (See the church behind us?) When we came back for the service guess who was there again.....yep! You guessed right. This time he was in full garb, complete with the scowl. I think he recognized us when we pushed the gates open after the service had already begun. We snuck in and found seats. The service was in Czech, but it was stunning. They rang bells as we took Communion and an organ played behind us. "Scowler" priest took offering and rushed by us without a glance. He honestly gave the impression that he has the most miserable life imaginable. Megan and I just laughed, thinking he is like a permanent fixture of the church...like the gold altar and the carvings of saints.

Sidekick Scowler Priest who "welcomes" in the weary travelers of life.


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