I’ve had to write about death a lot this year. Usually, it has been my experience that I will need to deal with the death of 1 or 2 people that are part of my life in a given year. This year has been different – I’ve seen a lot of people that I know, or who are important to people I know, pass from the scene. I sense that we’ve been at the crossroads a lot this year, watching the hearse go by.
Over the last week we’ve seen two more people leave. I did not know either individual, but both stories deserve a few lines. The first is the death of the grandmother of my daughter’s best friend. This lady, who was 66 at the time of her passing, was a gentle soul who had endured a number of health issues over the past decade. Things have been difficult for the family of my daughter’s friend – they have a severely autistic son who has been increasingly difficult to care for and they have had to deal with a number of other health and family issues prior to this. Jill and the mother of Maria’s friend have become friends as well and I have been impressed with this woman, who is a friendly, smart, organized and sensible soul. They have been through a lot as a family.
Meanwhile, we received news that the infant son of our church’s youth minister died on Sunday. This young couple came to St. John’s a few years ago and they have done a nice job creating a vibrant organization for the kids of the parish. They had struggled to have a child and finally were able to bring home their son earlier this year. He became ill over the weekend and died after only three months of life. Losing a child is probably the toughest thing a couple can go through. Both of these families deserve your prayers.