Remembering the Dead – from Henri Nouwen’s Bread for the Journey

When we lose a dear friend, someone we have loved deeply, we are left with a grief that can paralyse us emotionally for a long time.   People we love become part of us.  Our thinking, feeling and acting are codetermined by them:  Our fathers, our mothers, our husbands, our wives, our lovers, our children, our friends … they are all living in our hearts.  When they die a part of us has to die too.  That is what grief is about:  It is that slow and painful departure of someone who has become an intimate part of us.  When Christmas, the new year, a birthday or anniversary comes, we feel deeply the absence of our beloved companion.  We sometimes have to live at least a whole year before our hearts have fully said good-bye and the pain of our grief recedes.   But as we let go of them they become part of our “members” and as we “re-member” them, they become our guides on our spiritual journey.

So there is much to remember and give thanks for on Remembrance Sunday, there are still many men and women  serving abroad trying to bring about peace and stability, so continue to hold them  and their families in our daily prayers.

Be still and quiet and give thanks for those who have gone before us and those who are far away putting their lives on line for all of us and remember the sacrifice Jesus Christ gave for all of us.

Perhaps just come sit quietly and pray in Church, light a candle but also remember to pray for yourself.

David Messer