In the last seven days, I have attended 3 funerals. The first was for a friend's mother. She wasn't a young woman and had been ill for some time. She nearly died several times last year and while her family felt blessed to have the additional time with her, she will be sorely missed. Her sons spoke of her love for her children and grandchildren. They wept freely as they celebrated her transition from this life to the next.
The second funeral was for a 93 year old friend whom I was privileged to know for nearly 33 years. She was an inspiration to us all. She was always charitable - even when offering needed corrections. She seemed tireless and when something was needed, she was there before anyone thought to ask. I will miss her, as will her family, but we all know she is enjoying a well-deserved reward.
Today's funeral was by far the most difficult. I didn't know the young man who died. I knew his aunt, my sign language teacher. Harry grew up between two cultures. The family of his birth is Deaf (though not all are deaf). He proudly brought legions of hearing friends home and shared his family with them. His death was unexpected and devastating to so many of his friends. Today his mother made us laugh and cry as she shared stories of his life. Her faith that he rests now in the arms of a loving God is her consolation in this time of great grief and an inspiration to all who attended the funeral.