Life is a Mixed Bag
Posted on October 13, 2015 by Sister Carol Perry

I sat down to breathe and realized that life is such a whirl of situations that we each face daily. I am a prime example.

I am just back from the military burial of my brother at Arlington National Cemetery. It was a ceremony done with precision and great personalism, with not a second wasted and with no sense of hurry, with a beauty that stirred both my patriotism and my love of my family. I know these sound like paradoxes, and they probably are, but they are so true that I have had to reflect on each of them as a separate strand.

As Taps sounded in the clear morning air at Arlington, I heard it as a farewell to one life and a clarion call to resurrection into a new one. My brother, who so loved order and punctuality, must have watched from some heavenly rampart with an enormous sense of satisfaction. This was his kind of ceremony!

Then, the very next morning I was part of a symposium in New York on family caregiving, based on the premise that at some time in our lives we will all be either care-giving or care-receiving. Representatives from Islam, Judaism and Christianity spoke on this topic in their respective faith traditions. That too was so affirming in that one came away with a great sense of “we are all in this together.”

One of the most touching aspects was music from “The Unforgettables”, a chorus composed of people with dementia and their family members founded by NYU Langone Medical Center to test the role of music therapy with these clients. They were so remarkable that I was almost in tears.

Since those two days began my week I am almost afraid of what the rest will bring. However, each day has its moments that say to us, “Stop. Think. Give thanks that this is one new strand of weaving a life.” It has to be loved!

Comments

Louise on October 20, 2015

Loved the image of the moment as both farewell and clarion call to resurrection. Beautiful and healing!

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Sister Carol Perry

A gifted teacher and resident bible scholar at Marble, Sister Carol uses her extensive scholarship and imaginative storytelling skills to offer a fresh and innovative approach to exploring the Scriptures, bringing the stories of the Bible to life.

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