Part of my duties as sacristan include dealing with the candles in the chapel. This morning before our chapel service I was working on an older candle, trying to get it to fit into the stand that holds it for our evening prayer services. Eventually I got it to fit, put the brass follower on top, and realized that it needed to burn for a bit for it to settle correctly. I went ahead and lit the candle (as I have done probably 50 times… in the sacristy), let it burn for a bit, and then lit my candle lighter, extinguished the candle, and went to light the candles in the chancel.
As I exited the sacristy… the fire alarms went off. Sure enough, the small amount of smoke from extinguishing the candle set off the fire alarm in the chapel. I have to say… it is effective! Incredibly loud! Thankfully, a seminary maintenance supervisor was in the building and shut it off quickly. I fessed up immediately and retreated to the vestry to get the student ready for the service. In doing so, I missed the fire department arriving. Two trucks and the chief.
Thankfully, my boss got a good chuckle out of the whole situation. No harm, no foul. The only think… I was the brunt of many jokes in my post-chapel class.