Last week, we learned with sorrow of the passing of Pope Francis’ relatives, including his nephew’s wife and two very young children, in a car accident in Argentina. A Vatican Radio message relayed the Pope’s wish that “all those who share in his grief join with him in prayer.”
Death, especially when it comes suddenly and unexpectedly, can challenge our faith. In times of grief, we always have recourse to our faith in God and our fellowship with one another. The Order of Christian Funerals provides a helpful reminder of our hope in life to come:
Trusting in God, We have prayed together for our beloved deceased, there is sadness in parting, but we take comfort in the hope that one day we shall see them again and enjoy their friendship. … the mercy of God will gather us together again in the joy of his kingdom. Therefore let us console one another in the faith of Jesus Christ. — USCCB. Order of Christian Funerals. “Final Commendation B.” Totowa, NJ: Catholic Book Publishing Corporation, 1998. 104.
This week, let us join with the worldwide church in offering our prayers for the consolation of the bereaved and to remind us all of the hope of eternal life that our faith gives us.