A Sunday school teacher asked her students to write a question they would ask God. A precocious, clever boy handed his paper in with this inquiry to the divine: “Dear God: Instead of letting people die and having to make new ones, why don’t You just keep the ones you have?”
Have you ever wished that a departed loved one would return, just for a little while? Why would you want that of them? If that were possible, I doubt that mom, dad, brother, sister or child would want to come back.
St. Paul said our true home is in heaven (2 Corinthians 5:2). We are just living in tents here. There is a poem that speaks of our desire for happiness. It explains for me why a loved one, who died in a state of grace, would not want to come back, just for a little while. It is a poem that fits a male or a female.
Last Chance to Weep
A year has passed and still you grieve,
the tears flow down your face;
You miss her voice, you miss her laugh,
no one can take her place.
But when you think of where she is
in Heaven’s land so fair,
you know you’re weeping for yourself,
’cause there’s no weeping there.
Her closest friend is Jesus
and He takes her by the hand.
He talks with her for hours
as they walk in Heaven’s land.
There’s light once more within her eyes,
her smile is always near.
So cry your tears while you’re down there,
’cause there’s no crying here.
Here is where she’s happiest;
here’s where she belongs.
She’s praising God with every breath
and joining in the songs.
A joyful glow is on her face
and wonder fills her eyes.
So let your tears flow if you must,
’cause here, nobody cries.
She has a mansion that is grand
and friends that she can’t number.
in this land where there’s no slumber.
And she shines brighter than the stars
and angels seek her face.
So grieve and miss her while you may.
There’s no grief in this place.
If she could speak to you once more,
one thought she would repeat,
that now her happiness is full,
that now her joy’s complete,
that Christ will be returning soon
and all creation waits.
He’ll wipe the tears from every eye
just inside Heaven’s gates.
One day you’ll be together, Yes!
And that day time can’t sever.
There’ll be no death or parting then
in that Blessed Forever.
You’ll see her anytime you wish.
What joy your hearts will reap!
So cry your eyes out while on earth.
It’s your last chance to weep.
– By Connie Hinnen Cook
Pope St. John Paul II spoke on the secret to true happiness in 2002 at Toronto for World Youth Day. On Thursday, July 25, the Pope was welcomed in Exhibition Place in front of 400,000 young people. He told them that the secret of true happiness had been given by Jesus in his Sermon on the Mount, with the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:1-16), which were read to the crowd. He then spoke to the young children and to all of us.
“I finish with a prayer. O Lord Jesus Christ, keep these young people in Your love. Let them hear your voice and believe what you say, for you alone have the words of life. Teach them how to profess their faith, bestow their love, and impart their hope to others. Make them convincing witnesses to your Gospel in a world so much in need of your saving grace. Make them the new people of the Beatitudes, that they may be the salt of the earth and the light of the world at the beginning of the Third Christian Millennium. Mary, Mother of the Church, protect and guide these young men and women of the Twenty-first Century. Keep us all close to your maternal heart. Amen.”
Father Dennis Meinen serves as chaplain at Holy Spirit Retirement Home, Sioux City, for Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts in the diocese, and Faithful Friar of the Garrigan 4th Degree Assembly of the Knights of Columbus, Sioux City.