Sunday, March 27, 2011

Surely The Presence of the Lord is in This Place

My "Fingerprint Friday" post for 4/1/11
Visit Beki's blog to join in.


We went to the neatest party yesterday. There are two sweet nuns who were in our Sunday morning choir for several years and Sister Pat, age 70, has been struggling with cancer for the past couple of years and is not expected to live much longer. She had her funeral program and music all planned, with people from three different church choirs that the nuns were in at different times to all come together and sing.......then someone had the wonderful idea, why don't we do this for her before she dies?

So yesterday afternoon, from 2:00-4:00, a lot of people who know her and love her met at a community center and everyone brought finger foods/desserts, and we all sang. I think there were around 100-125 people. We know several who were unable to come, but it was a great gathering.

Sister Pat on left, getting ready to read a story, with Sister Kathleen

She is very frail and has lost a lot of weight. When I hugged her, I could feel her bones. :( She's been back and forth several times between home and the hospice center where she was the past few days, and a couple of friends brought her to the party about a half hour after everyone had arrived. She walked into the very crowded room and quipped "We thought just a few people would come," and we all laughed.

She's very proud of her Irish heritage and, as you can see, she was dressed to the 9s in a beautiful green outfit. She was full of energy for the party and you'd never know she was in the hospice center shortly before! For quite a while, she sat in a chair at the front of the room, while people waited in line to speak to her individually, as we all sang her favorite songs with piano accompaniment. She shared a couple of her favorite stories - one about how each of us has a unique gift of love to share with the world, and another about how we go through valleys (challenges) in life, learn what we need to, and become one with God.....and led some of the songs with her beautiful soprano voice.

Sister Pat with church choir members leading singing

We had song sheets, green of course, with songs she had chosen - some Irish classics and some religious. One of her favorites is also one of mine ... "Surely the Presence of the Lord is in This Place" ... and He certainly was yesterday afternoon!

Mike and I were very happy that we were able to be there, and it was great to see some of our old friends we hadn't seen in a while.

There were fun moments with laughter, sad moments with tears....but how beautiful to celebrate her life while she could be a part of it. We should all have our funerals before we die!


Bethe77 said...

Im sitting here with tears flowing down my face. What a gift you all gave her adn the gift she in return has givine. Isnt it just like God to shine out so beautifully. What a wonderful day. Thank you so much for sharing this in your post. It has me so choked up with the love of God and His love for you all and Sister. God bless you all. What a gift you just gave the blog world.

hopeandjoyhome said...

How special and what a great idea!God will surely look out for Sister Pat!