We had a funeral this past week for a beautiful soul, 94 year old Loretta DiLeonardo. Surrounded by her family and friends, she was given back to her Father in heaven. About 15 minutes before the Funeral Mass, I went down to school to drop off the dog. While I was down there, the students were outside playing and a few of them asked, “What is going on at church?” These students were in second grade. I told them we have a funeral and that I had to go back up to church. While I was walking away, one of the young ladies said, very genuinely, “Please tell them how sad we are for them.”
Sometimes, the Holy Spirit works through people in such a way that it cuts through our soul. That sounds pretty deep, I know, but this second grade student understood at a very young age that our faith is just that - OUR faith. Somehow God gave this student not only the courage to let her mind be known but also the strength of faith to share her faith. I let the family know of her comments which gave great comfort to them.
Please tell them how sad we are for them. In Latin, the word “Compassion” literally means to “suffer with another person”. It is the reason why at wake services and funerals sometimes we trip over our own words when trying to comfort the family. It’s not our words that matter, rather, it is our presence and our suffering hearts alongside those near and dear to the deceased. It is OUR faith. Amazing how this young lady understood this at such a young age.
OUR faith is a great focus for us as we enter the second week of Lent. We have our individual goals and plans this Lent but let us not forget that it is not just MY faith, but OUR faith. Spending more time in compassion with one another is a great way to spend Lent. And there is NO greater way to spend Lent that, alongside our brothers and sisters here at Visitation, to be compassionate with our Lord. To suffer with Him as He endures His Passion - to be compassionate with our Lord - what a wonderful way to spend our second week of Lent.
May the Lord give you His peace,