I was talking to him about going to the visitation
and the funeral since he was worried about what might happen. I told
him that I would be there at the visitation, hoping to reassure him
that he would see familiar faces.
He seemed shocked that I would attend and said, “Grandma, did you
know my Great-Grandma?”
In truth, I did not know her well. I had only met her once or twice,
so I answered his question, “No, honey, I didn’t know her very
well.” And then he shocked me a bit by saying, “Well then why are
Although he was only seven years old, he is echoing a concern I’ve
heard by adults, telling me that they should only go to a visitation
if they know the person who died. I agree if that person was close
to you that you need to visit that person’s family and visitations
are a good way to express our sympathies and care to the grieving
family. But it astounds me that people think they should not go to a
visitation if they didn’t know the deceased, but they do know the
family. When my father-in-law died, many people who know me
expressed that they were not coming, since they did not know him.
For those of us who are Christian, we need to remember that when we
die, our body returns to the earth and our soul returns to God. When
we attend a visitation. . .the deceased person is no longer there.
We don’t attend to visit with that person, but their family.
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We, as Christians, know that the person we knew is
now with God. That is what Easter is all about. We no longer fear
evil. We no longer fear chaos. And most of all, we no longer fear
death, since our souls live eternally with God in heaven.
Jesus tells us that heaven is a place of compassion, love and grace,
so we are not devastated for our loved ones, but celebrate that they
are made whole and restored to new life.
Of course, Jesus taught us all these wonderful wisdoms while he was
alive. He lived his life to the fullest and wants us to live ours
Whether we are celebrating Easter, the Risen Christ, in worship or
whether it is six months after Easter and we find ourselves in a
funeral visitation, it’s so very important to remember to be fully
alive, to celebrate life, whether it is on earth or in heaven.
Christ has risen! Let us celebrate that we can rise also, both now
and in eternity. Blessings to all this Easter season!