If I should die before I wake…

I pray the Lord my soul to take…

It seems I am taking a few days to dream dreams and have wee small visions. Perhaps it is because I am paying attention this week to a wee small one, Miss Lily, beloved granddaughter. Perhaps it is a problem with recovery from a wee small illness. But whatever the reason, my mind has wandered for a few days to matters other than the Anglican Communion and its workings. On the whole this is probably a good thing to do every once and a while.

On Wednesday of this week I went to the funeral of The Rev. Chris Lee - a fine man, husband of a good friend, good father, good priest. The service was a fine testament to a wonderful person.

Driving home I got to day dreaming about the obituary that I would like to run in the paper when my living license is rescinded. Here it is:

"Mark Harris is dead. It happened (expectedly) (unexpectedly) on xx/xx. Several people, including some who are close to him, have attested that this is true. He is as dead as they come. Nothing more will be heard from him until the great chorus at the close of time, at which time he will join the expansive sigh as all things are made finally perfect. If he is thinking of anything at that point, he will probably be wondering why it took so long.

Family, friends, companions and loved ones are invited to a celebration of the Eucharist on xx/xx at xx:xx o'clock. Choices of music and some prayers will be as he wished. The rest of the service is of course, out of his hands. Everyone is invited to stick around after the service for a continuing celebration in which tall tales and true, lies and small talk will be the order of the day, along with good food and drink. Commiseration among those who did not beat him to the door will be mollified by the knowledge that they get to talk about him and not the other way around. It serves him right.

Mark loved family, community folk, and people as well as he was able. He knew it was reciprocated. He held The Episcopal Church in high regard and was a passable servant of this small portion of the body of Christ.

His family is not responsible for this obituary. He is. It is his last testament of will."

The trouble with being dead of course is that you can't even control the obituary. Then again, why is that surprising? If life was a matter of being in control and death not, we'd all be declared dead anyway. Fortunately life is not about control, but about love…an entirely different matter.

Back to work.


  1. Hey, Mark, sorry about your pneumonia, but please take your time on making us write that obit (over which you do have some control). Hope you are healed by the end of the month -- we'll need you!

  2. Alas, it seems to be the subjunctive which has died. I learned "If I SHOULD die..."

    Scans better that way, too.

  3. Dear Cru[tpgram... you are absolutely right. Goes to show you if one doesn't use a prayer regularly it begins to migrate...

    Thanks for the correction.



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