Monday, September 03, 2007

The Great Sadness

[SONG.] AMIENS; Under the greenwood tree
Who loves to lie with me,
And turn his merry note
Unto the sweet bird's throat,
Come hither, come hither, come hither:
Here shall he see No enemy
But winter and rough weather.

JAQUES; More, more, I prithee, more.

AMIENS; It will make you melancholy, Monsieur Jaques.

JAQUES; I thank it. More, I prithee, more. I can suck
melancholy out of a song, as a weasel sucks eggs.
More, I prithee, more.

-- As You Like It, Act 2, Scene 5

I posted a quote from Kierkegaard yesterday -- I've had people ask if all is well -- and the answer is yes, all will be well.

I've been feeling melancholy this week for a couple of reasons; and one in particular. The little church I'm with right now has about 100 members in regular attendance and another 50 or so who are 12-24s (attend church 12 to 24 times a year.) This last 8 months or so we've done 2 funerals -- this last winter for a young man of 13 years of age who committed suicide and last Wednesday for a young woman of 28.

She was a particularly pretty person; full of life with two little towheaded boys and a handsome husband. She was surrounded by loving family and friends. Her boys found her in bed last Saturday morning. She had died in her sleep. The funeral was very well attended. Her mother-in-law sang. And I can say no more. It's just too heavy.

It's not as if I've not had parishioners die before. And it's not like I've not seen death touch the young before -- after all, I've done a unit of CPE at a Children's Hospital. It's just that it seems fresh every time -- and as it should. I've been dwelling in the melancholy. There is a book I've been reading that talks about grief being The Great Sadness. I've had The Great Sadness draped over me this week and it's heavy.

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