I have to wonder if there is something in the water or what?!?!
In my former congregation, yes, there were older people, but they were pretty healthy. Here, I have something like three people in hospice, and one just died last week. I already had my first funeral on Saturday. Previous to this, the last funeral I did was in 2008, so I was a little rusty.
(Before this next part, I want to say that I know that a funeral is not all about me. But this is my blog so I am going to be a bit self-absorbed.) I really am not a fan of funerals, especially when I don't know the deceased. It becomes an exercise in creative writing and then the fear that I got the whole thing wrong. That is quite a bit of stress! I want to do a good job for the family, but there is also the real fear that I am going to make some proclamation about the deceased and have everyone say something like, "WHO?"
But even though it has been busy, it really is nice to be back in the church. For all the ups and downs, I think this is going to be a good place. The people have been through some things and are a bit scared, but we have all been through scary times. It is just helping these folks to see that this is not the end of the world. We will make it through this and emerge stronger. We just can't lock ourselves into a room and be afraid.
Seems to me I have heard something about this in a gospel reading or two, lately.