I had my staff appraisal today. It went well. You’ll be pleased to know I still have my job!

We met in a hotel and we had a good lunch too. And while it was a very affirming and worthy process there was something that kept grabbing my attention. The wake next door.

You see a young man had died and the funeral were meeting for the after service wake, to celebrate and remember his life. He was 18 when he died.

I longed to reach out and comfort the family and bring some words of hope. After my appraisal I approached the full room and looked in. I prayed silently for the young mans mum and family. But I dared not go in.

It wasn’t my place to.

As I was leaving the hotel a lady, brightly dressed, walked by me and ordered some drinks from the bar. I asked her if she was from the wake and said how sorry I was to hear that the man who had died had been so young. “Yes.” She said. “I’m his mum.”

I said how I had been praying for her and that I wanted to have an opportunity to express how sorry I was to her. She shared about her son and I shared some gentle words of comfort.

As I left I thanked God for where my heart went out to the mum who had lost a son he brought her straight to me for me to share some simple words.

It felt like a moment of being his hands and feet.

One thought on “The funeral wake in the next door room…

  1. It is so very difficult and challenging sometimes when someone is grieving. I am a volunteer at Chester night church and this last Saturday, a man was talking to myself and our team leader on the door. He said that he was not a believer but his wife had been. She had been a strong catholic and brought up their four children as Catholics, right up until her death four years ago of cancer. He said he was angry with God. Why didn’t God look after his girl, she was only fifty five? It went on like that and we could only say how sorry we were and it must have been dreadful for him and his children. I remembered a mentor of mine at night church, told me to always answer a question with a question and all I could ask him was “Did your wife take comfort in her faith when she was ill”? He said that she did and that she had the priest in the night before she died to bless her. He talked for a while but would not come in. It was later, that my leader said that in those circumstances it is still raw and when someone is grieving, it does not help to tell them that their loved one has everlasting life. When they are still angry it is best to give them time but if they are angry with God – how can they say, they don’t believe in him. I have discovered that with bereavement, it is like walking on eggshells.

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