Julia's Guardian Angel Fund

Thursday, April 14, 2011

For love, if real, has no end

Even though there were tornado warnings in the area on Sunday, there were probably 700 people that came to pay their respects to my sister and her children.  On Monday, that number was probably 500.  The entire church was full with folding chairs everywhere and an extra 100 or so outside in the vestibule (where the 700 stood to wait to talk to my sister.)

While I find comfort in the Requiem Mass, there was a "memorial service" to celebrate my brother-in-law's life.  There were a few Bible verses read, some preaching from the two pastors at their church, beautiful music, recollections by family and friends (including my husband).  It was a lovely way to remember him but for me, it still feels unfinished.

My take away is that God is Love and whether there was a "memorial service" or a Requiem Mass, the end result is the same.  What my sister needed was the memorial service to say goodbye as did her kids.  Her five kids and their exchange students all went up and read a letter they had written to their dad.  They were followed by my sister.  She didn't cry.  She is a rock.  She thanked everyone for everything...for coming to the service, the flowers, the food (that they have needed to move over to their neighbors because they are out of room) but most of all for the outpouring of love.  She finished off with a song (that she spoke of, not sang) that we sang together at funerals. She and I were often called to sing at our small town parish for weekend Mass or other services. 

Like a Seal on Your Heart by Carey Landry
Based on the Song of Songs 8:6-7

Set me like a  seal on your heart
Like a seal on your arm
Set me like a  seal on your heart
How right it is to love you

1)For love is stronger that death
Stronger even than Hell.
The flash of it is a flash of fire
A flame of the Lord Himself.

2)Come, then, my love,
Come, my beloved.
No flood can quench our love,
For love, if real, has no end.

Friday, April 8, 2011

In Loving Memory

I don't have time to post a photo that could do him justice.  A picture would not be able to show how beautiful and amazing he was.

I'm sorry my blog has been rather sad lately.  It's not about to end right now.

At 7:11 am Wednesday, I received a call from my older (only) sister.  She was calling to tell me her 45 year old husband died at 2:45am.  John has had Type 1 Diabetes for over 30 years.  He's managed it magnificently with diet, exercise and diligence.  My sister has always helped make sure all that was possible, supporting him in any way she could.  So while he had an illness, it had never had the best of him.

John was a fabulous individual with the most incredible sense of humor.  He and my sister were parents to five spectacular kids - a 17 year old daughter and four (yes, quadruplets) 14 year olds, two boys and two girls.  I think that alone would qualify you for sainthood - raising quadruplets with a girl three years older.

I could gush about how John would drop everything if you needed help, or how he would drop a joke, just when it was needed or even how he could bake a pie better than anyone I know.  That would not, could not tell you even a little bit about him.   He was an amazing man...a marathon runner, church elder, gardener extraordinaire, a wonderful supporting husband and father.  And still that doesn't touch the surface.

My blog will probably be quiet for quite a while as I help my sister through this, as much as she will let me.  Please pray for the repose of John's soul and for my sister and her family.

UPDATED WITH PHOTO:  John loved babies.  Here he is, loving my two youngest boys.

We used to kid John that his lack of hair only made him look younger, not older.