I have enthusiastic permission from Gloria’s whole family to run this part of the post I pulled a few days ago.
Funerals are consuming more and more of our lives. Mostly they are memorial services–sans corpse–celebrating the life of the one who is gone. They include slide shows of baby pictures and roving microphones for those present to share moving tributes or funny anecdotes.
A recent favorite was for Gloria, a friend of mine for over 30 years (their youngest daughter, Jessie, was partly named for me). Gloria was in a wheelchair as long as I knew her. Yet she wanted to be remembered as “a woman loved by God” and since she loved red, the family asked that everyone wear red to her memorial service.
No wonder, as Jerry and I were rushing out the door for the service and the home phone rang, I grabbed it and said to the person on the other end, “Hi, I can only talk a minute. We’re on our way to a wedding!”
In the background I heard Jerry correct me. “Funeral.”
“I mean a funeral.”
Well, it felt like a celebration.
And it was. Gloria’s service was full of light and joy in a sea of red, from hats to shirts, blouses, and dresses to nail polish. As we compared memories throughout the service, we realized Gloria had touched an amazing number of lives with just plain unadulterated love and acceptance.