Shekinah Glory

Memorial Service
January 10, 2010, 1:33 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

From a very young age I was attracted to theater. At a certain young age I found myself devouring any book that I could get my hands on. I was curious and when the Westerns, Mysteries, science fictions and the sports biographies ran thin I turned to this odd section of books that rarely had patrons in our local library. It was called the Literature section. It contained magical books of poetry, fiction and these strange slender books that contained mostly dialogue and direction. These of course were plays and the ones that really interested me from the first were Greek tragedies. Euripides and Sophocles held me spellbound.

Yet, looking back on that childhood fascination I realized one thing about those tragedies that appealed to me most, and still appeals to me. It is the foreknowledge that the audience has of the impending tragic circumstances of one of the protagonists. Whether it is by the oracle of Delphi or the Chorus there is little drama in what will happen, it is all revealed from early in the play. Now, I know that what attracted me so deeply to those plays was the foreknowledge of tragedy, the ability to know fate.

The surprise and horror that the loss of a brother brings is a deeply wounding tragedy. It is hard enough for friends, relatives and coworkers to say goodbye to someone. Yet, a brother and sister relationship is a much different tie. It is here that we yearn for the foreknowledge of the chorus in an ancient Greek tragedy. “If only I had known, been able to prepare, said all the things I wanted to.” Yet, we are not all knowing, we are like the characters in those plays that must live out tragedies, sadness and horrors of loss.

I wish that we could prepare more for loss, that we could not intensely feel the jolting loss of someone close to us. I think that it is human to want to avoid pain and suffering, but it is also human to experience them as well. One of the most beautiful things about being human is that we expect life and that death still shocks us.

So, we are left with loss and absence when a death like Alvaro’s comes. Unexpected or not it is always a shock. It makes for an absence of someone’s vital presence in our lives and reminds us that we are on this plain for a mere shadow of time. We are not to avoid these feelings of sadness, but attempt to touch them deeply. That is what makes us human as well. So, as we say goodbye to Alvaro we will remember all the things that made him an important part of our lives. We will grieve his uncalculated loss on our lives and know that moving forward we will be missing something in our experiences from now on. We will celebrate and grieve, we will remember, laugh and cry, but most of all we will support each other in making it through one more tragedy in our own journey in life.


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