Easter Vigil in a pandemic

In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q: Thank you for your blessed blog and wonderful insights. We’re shortening up our Easter Vigil this year for pandemic reasons, only doing 3 OT readings, for example, and the Litany of Saints came up. We’re wondering if it would be “liturgically OK” to shorten up the number of saints, for time considerations.

Thank you,


A: Thanks for your comments on my blog.

Oh, you probably could shorten it. There is a precedent for that with the order of baptism of children. We’re making lots of shortcuts during the pandemic, decisions we would never make in other times of life.

But I’d also consider doing the entire litany at a quicker pace. In my experience, many cantors lead the litany too slowly. One choir director described the ideal pace as “pounding on the gates of heaven.”

Or you could recite it. Again, not ideal, but a pandemic is not ideal.