A member of my congregation invited me to attend a meeting of her I Lost A Child group. Occasionally clergypersons were invited to a session and in that context came this invitation. From the outset it was my attitude that I could probably offer very little to these folks. My children were alive and well and they had never even come close to having a life-threatening disorder. And here sat these parents, all at various points along the road to restoration following the death of a son or daughter. Yet one parent had even brought a tape recorder in order to preserve my comments.
I've had many reports of the Remembrance Sunday service held at Dickleburgh (in Norfolk, England) this year, mostly about the preacher. Since Dickleburgh has a historic connection with the Americans from the time of Second World War, they always invite the American Air Base at Mildenhall in Suffolk to join them for the service, and always invite the current American air force chaplain to preach.
On the Sunday afternoon following Thanksgiving, when I was in seventh grade, it began to snow. It started slowly and undramatically -- much like any number of other snows I had experienced growing up in Detroit. The sky turned the shade of dirty wool and the flakes danced through the wind as in one of those glass balls that you invert. Little by little the sidewalks whitened, and soon the neighborhood was alive with the rasping sound of shovels. Before long the roads were filled and you could no longer see the curb.