Pastor’s Keyboard: Many of you have asked me about my grandmother. I’m sad to report that at this time her health is rapidly failing. She has decided to stop dialysis. The doctors felt it was delaying the excusable and she is now impatient for the Good Lord to take her home. This has been the hardest on my grandfather and my parents, so please especially keep them in your prayers.
My grandparents have been happily married for over 60 years and have rarely ever been apart. They speak few words to each other but often have communicated in a language all their own (mostly through knowing facial expressions). My mom and grandmother, like so many mothers and daughters, have not always gotten along, yet up until recently they often talked to each other on the phone. Now that she is approaching her final goodbyes to us on this side of Heaven, I have made more time to think on what my grandmother’s life has been to me these 43 years that I’ve been blessed to walk God’s green earth.
At a time when my parents stopped attending church, it was she and my grandma Lily (my father’s mother now deceased) who took turns taking me to church, and Sunday school. During my childhood, my grandparents often had me stay the weekend at their house. My grandmother, and I would have long conversations about everything under the sun. My mother frequently reminded me not to feel I had to tell my grandmother everything she asked (in other words “don’t talk about me”), but I would anyway!
In later years, I would spend a lot of my summer vacations at their beach condo in Virginia Beach. It would be just the three of us, and there were always fun times. Later, as I entered seminary, my grandparents would visit me two or more times a year, and often send support by mail and by phone. When I finally got ordained it was my grandmother who decided she would purchase my Chalice, and restore some ancient vestments for my first Mass. Many members of her episcopal parish attended my ordination and prayed for me. In these years since I was ordained, we have talked often, and she has been a source of wise council and inspiration in my life.
My grandmother Silvia has meant the world to me and was one who helped shaped who I have become. The words of the Boys to Men song “It’s so hard to say goodbye ” keeps flooding into my mind, but my faith continuously reminds me that she is a daughter of God, and this (pray the Lord) will not be a permanent goodbye. She is going ahead of me as she always has.
Please pray for her, and my family. Stay close to all those you love, for I have realized that I have been privileged to help her prepare for this final journey. I am grateful to her for all the many blessings she has brought to me. All is Grace!
Your brother and father in Christ Jesus,