I’ve Gone to Rest a Little While

I’ve Gone to Rest a Little While

December 30, 2014 | HNMWebmaster | Comfort, Discipleship, Eternal Life, Faith, Father Salvador, Grace, Homilies, Hope, Strength, Trust

Mass of Christian Burial for Edward William Wessel
December 30, 2014

Readings: Is 40:28-31; Psalm 121; 2 Cor 5:1, 6-10; Jn 14:1-6
by Rev. Salvador Añonuevo, Pastor

Lettie, Gary – the three of us were with Eddie when he was born into life eternal. Members of Holy Name of Mary know that we never say that Eddie “died.” We use the words “born into life eternal.” It is one thing to die; it is another thing to be born into life eternal.

Eddie played many musical instruments: banjo, organ, piano, violin. He played by ear. I also play by ear. Had I known we had this in common, we could have talked about this in the hospital, but he was so busy thanking me for being there. He received communion and was anointed. He is fine as far as God is concerned. He was a good man.

As we pray together, we have Eddie’s remains and his picture. But the real Eddie is with us. We can no longer hear his voice, but he can hear us. We can no longer see him, but he can see us. He can see all of us right now and he is very grateful for all of you who are here. After the Mass, we will have fellowship and I hope you will all be able to join us. Eddie will be there in spirit. He is just a prayer away.

Eddie’s experience in life taught him that whatever children see has a lasting effect on them. Imagine, until he was 77 years old, he still remembered how his dad put ashes by the fireplace and ate the cookies himself to convince Eddie that there was a Santa Claus. What we do is remembered by children and grandchildren for the rest of their lives.

Although Eddie could be rough on the outside, he was gentle and sensitive on the inside. Most musicians are. All of us try to be good. We try to be Christians. We try to do everything that God tells us to do. That is what is important. We don’t need to be perfect because we can’t be. You know Eddie wasn’t perfect, but he tried, and that is good enough for God. For as long as we try to pray and live in God’s presence, and be a good friend to everyone around us – that’s good enough for God. Eddie has done that.

I had the privilege of giving him Last Rites and Holy Communion. The same Jesus he received in Holy Communion is the same Jesus who is now with Eddie. This is what Jesus said in the gospel: “Do not let your heart be troubled. Have faith in God; have faith also in me, because in my father’s house I am going to prepare a place for you, so that where I am, you also may be.”

Eddie is now claiming one of those places that God has long prepared for him.

Before I came here, I came across this poem:

“Fill not your heart with pain and sorrow,
but remember me in every tomorrow.
Remember the joy, the laughter, the smiles,
I’ve only gone to rest a little while.

Although my leaving causes pain and grief,
my going has eased my hurt and given me relief.

So dry your eyes and remember me
not as I am now, but as I used to be.

Because I will remember you and look on with a smile,
Understand, in your hearts, I’ve only gone to rest a little while.
For as long as I have the love of each of you,
I can live my life in the hearts of all of you.”

With this in mind, and knowing the faith of Eddie, we can say that as unlikely as it may seem at the present moment, there will surely come a time when the joy of remembering will be greater than the pain of loss.

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