Today is the funeral of a dear 31-year old mom from our homeschooling community. One week ago she collapsed while homeschooling her kids, and died immediately of what was later found to be coronary artery disease, which she was unaware of having. She leaves behind a husband and four children, ages 7 down to a baby who is not yet one year old. In just over an hour family and friends will say good-bye at a solemn high requiem Mass (where we would be but for sickness).
This is a loss that I can't fathom. I know such tragedies happen, within the will of our loving God, but it is so far beyond my scope of understanding, that I don't have adequate words to apply to it. But I do know that it has given those of us who knew her pause to consider our own mortality, to be thankful for our own families, to realize when our husbands leave for work in the morning that it could be the last time we say good-bye.
For we all share in her destiny, and in the scope of all eternity, none of us has a very long earthly existence. "Whereas you know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is a vapour which appeareth for a little while, and afterwards shall vanish away. " (James 4:14-15) And hopefully, with this heightened sense of the brevity of our own earthly lives, we will renew our resolve to be ever-ready for our own eternal destiny.
And yet for all of the truth and comfort we find in our faith, my heart aches for the family enduring the loss of this young wife, mother, daughter. And so we do all that we know to do: we pray. We pray for this dear soul: Eternal rest grant unto her O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her, may she rest in peace. We pray for her family, may they find comfort in Mary, Our Blessed Mother, who certainly bore such sorrows, and in Jesus her Son and Our Lord, who alone can give peace, which surpasses our understanding, amidst their present storm.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray or us!
Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!