Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Grieving and Pastoring Together

This morning a dear church member died suddenly. He is the spouse of the PNC chairperson, he created and maintained the church's (and presbytery's) websites, he was an elder (active until Jan.--now his wife is active), he came to every presbytery meeting (often as a member of the nominating committee) and he always collected tickets at the Church Turkey Supper (which is tomorrow).

I drove his wife to the hospital, and stood with her through her goodbyes. The funeral is Saturday. I could use all the prayers you can muster.


KnittinPreacher said...

Prayers for you and your people are being said right now.

Funeral tip that a friend gave me. Take the small post it notes and write the person's name on them and stick them in your Book of common worship or whatever book you are using that just says N for the name. You will forget and that way it is there for you to see. It lessens anxiety for you.


Magdalene6127 said...

Sarah, I am praying for you and for the family. I can feel from your post that you feel this loss acutely yourself, you are grieving as well.

Blessings, friend. The Spirit will guide you.


Nancy said...


Prayers for the family and for you. You are a sweet tenderhearted pastor; don't forget to let someone take care of you this week.

Peace of the Spirit,

schmidtly said...

Thank you all.

Visiting hours are today, and at the beginning of the time I've been asked to do a brief "program" with the four grandchildren (ages 4-9, I think) to help them process some of this on their level. Three of them are being raised Catholic, and one is being raised Muslim. All I can say is thank God for "Children in Worship." We'll be doing a lot of wondering together.

schmidtly said...

one week update

I made it through the funeral, and the regular service on Sunday. Monday was a much-needed day off.

I feel like I've crossed a threshold with this congregation. I sensed at the funeral that many members of the congregation really accepted me as their pastor on a new level. On top of that, the pastor emeritus (who I invited to give the eulogy) pulled me aside after the service and thanked me for coming to this church. He said that after 38 years there he had not idea what would happen when he left, and he had worried about the church struggling to find a good pastor, but that he's not worried anymore. That meant a lot.

The grief and pain is not over, but I can see the new growth in the midst of everything. Bonding is a good thing.