I met Opal when she was 99 years old and in hospice. I was working as a volunteer in hospice with my dog Pixie. Opal and I struck a friendship up immediately. Opal could barely speak, but we communicated well. We laughed and talked.
We both had a love of Sacred Scripture, and she had a quilt covered with beautiful verses on her quilt. We had our own Bible Study using her quilt. We’d laugh so much out of the joy of knowing each other.
I told her that people would wonder if we were really having a Bible Study because we laughed so much.
Through the months we knew each other, Opal would tell me how much she wanted to go home. I told her she couldn’t go home, that this nursing home was her home now. She would get upset with me. “No! I want to go HOME,” and she’d point to the sky. I finally realized she was talking about heaven. She was ready to go.
Our talks then shifted to question about what heaven was like. We decided that it was a beautiful place, and that heaven had a river running through it. After a time, we would describe the river to each other, and we decided that whoever reached heaven first would wait for the other one by that river. When we both arrived at the river, we decided that we would leave the river and chase angels.
I remember how much we both laughed at the idea of chasing angels.
Opal died almost a year ago now. I’m sure she’s waiting for me, whether in Purgatory or by the Heavenly River. In this year of Mercy,
we have a double edged indulgence. Whenever we pray for the deceased souls, they receive a partial indulgence, and so do we.
Eternal Rest, grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. Grant them eternal rest. Amen.
Pray for the Souls in Purgatory. Pray for those who will die each day.
Eternal Father, I offer You the most Precious Blood of your Divine Son Jesus, In union with all of the Masses said throughout the world today, in reparation for sins, for the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners in the Univesal Church, those within my own home, and within my family. Amen.
Photo in public domain. Wikimedia commons.