Spoke too soon about being ready to resume normal life last week – but *now* I’m ready to go.
Last week, attended the third funeral in a little over two years for a young adult son – my own son Andrew, who was struck by a car and killed one month shy of his 21st birthday while on a pro-life walk across America; Stephen Cox, a 21 year old who fulfilled his dream of becoming a monk only to die from an epileptic seizure a few days short of taking his first vows, and Jason Zari, a 28 year old philosopher who suffered from bi-polar disorder and evidently took his own life.
You can never tell what you will feel or think once you’ve been through something like this. All I could think of was that I hoped Jason got a nice funeral, comparable to the ones Andrew and Stephen got. I was getting choked up over worrying that this poor kid might not get the prayers and comfort and beauty he should have.
Andrew, because of his pro-life and school connections and the nature of his death, had a large crowd for his funeral Mass, with a half-dozen priests and a choir and the best organist in the area. Stephen got a full on Benedictine funeral, attended not only by dozens of monks but dozens of other priests from the area and from those attending a conference at the Abby. He got a solemn procession down to the graveyard and was laid to rest by his brothers.
I was relieved to see that Jason had a very nice Rosary and Mass, with a couple priests and a bunch of his teachers and classmates in addition to his family and friends. The testimonials they gave were very moving, telling of an extraordinarily bright and sensitive young man loved and admired by those who knew him. We all processed to the cemetery, where Jason was buried not too far from Andrew.
Young men are dying all over the world, in wars and accidents and from diseases, so it’s probably not unusual at all that three from a relatively small community would die within a couple years of each other. But, Lord, I could sure use a break from young deaths.
Eternal Rest grant to them, O Lord,
And let perpetual light shine upon them.
May their souls, and the souls of all the faithful departed,
Through the Mercy of God,
Rest in Peace,