The first emergency call came late on Saturday morning. It was in the form of a text sent from Fr. Pfeiffer. He had the flu. And if was anything like the one I had last week there was no way he was getting out of bed for the next two days.
Now, the prospect of staying in bed for two days isn't too bad except that it was the weekend and there a lot (hundreds) of people counting on the poor boy. So his pleas for help were desperate. I like to tell people that you can't tell a priest without your program but the programs were pretty useless this past weekend.
Perhaps the most interesting thing was the wedding Mass that Fr. Pf needed covered a couple hours from when he texted. He sent the readings over the phone and I threw something together. After all, this was a WHOLE NEW CROWD right? They've never heard my stuff before.
WRONG! The server was from St. Sebastian, the EMHC was from St. Sebastian, the cantor was from St. Sebastian, and half the congregation was from St. Sebastian. About the only people not from St. Sebastian was the bride and groom.
The little time we had before Mass was a maelstrom. I had to keep sending the server to the back of the church with questions. "Go find out their names." Ask them if they want, "all the days of my life" or "until death do us part." I usually know all this stuff months before the wedding and never had to think up all this stuff at the last minute. "Do they want to repeat after me or say 'I do'?"
Everything went well. At least I am certain the sacraments were both valid and licit. As I told the bride, if everything was perfect, nobody would talk about the wedding past the weekend. "It was just fine," people would say. But now . . . what a blessing . . . "The priest that was supposed to have the Mass ended up puking his guts out and they had to find someone else to run and have the Mass and you'll never guess who it was . . . " It made it much more of a story.