This has been a tough three days. I have attended two rosaries and two funerals. Tomorrow I will attend a memorial Mass for a woman who lived to be 103 years old.
The first funeral was for a man who was killed in a horrid car accident last Thursday. He was forty two years old and leaves behind a wife and three sons, with a baby coming in eight months. He was too young to die - or so we mortals think. But, God does not just gather the old to Himself, he gathers us at all different ages. The funeral Mass for Thomas was beautiful. The singing was stunning and the church was packed. Please pray for Tessie, Zach and the baby who is only four weeks gestation. Pray too for Tom's twin sons, who names I only know one of, Tom Junior.
About half way through the Mass, I noticed through the windows, an aide truck entering the parking lot. I wondered who was ill. Then, another aide truck and then a fire truck and then another fire truck. It was then that I realized that these were the men and women who had helped Thomas at the wreck. They had come to pay homage to him. The came in quietly and stood at the back of the church - respectful, solemn and attentive. They know the preciousness of life - they know their work and part of their work is the knowledge that no matter how much they know, how good their equipment is, how much they try, they are not God... Sometimes, the people who they are sent to rescue cannnot be rescued by mere mortals. Sometimes, God calls a person home to Himself.
And so these men and women stood - listening, paying tribute with us to Thomas and praying. It was a wonderful thing to see - these people who work with life and death every day, coming and be available to us, the mourners.
Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted.
The funeral we attended today was for Joann. She was 78 years old and had been in frail health for quite some time. She was a dear woman, sweet smile and ever so humble and faithful in her prayers. Her husband and four surviving 'children' were in attendance as were their eleven grandchildren. It was wonderful to see life being lived on. Please pray for Don (her widower), and their 'children'.
Tomorrow is Terry's memorial. She was 103. She was happy to have had her 103rd birthday and she was ready to go and be with Our Lord and her loved ones that have passed on before her. Terry had been a teacher - after she quit doing that in an official capacity, she volunteered to listen to the children learning to read.
May the souls of the faithful departed, Terry, Joann and Thomas, through the mercy of God rest in peace. And may perpetual light shine upon them now and forever.