Pastor’s Corner for the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C, by Fr. Bruce Botha SJ

My mother and Fr Russell’s mother met 15 years ago at our ordination. Whenever my parents were in town they would meet up with the Pollitt’s for a meal and, I am sure, gossip about their sons. On Tuesday they met again in heaven, a year and a day after my own mother’s death.


The communion of saints is our assurance that those whom we love are never truly separated from us, not in time nor distance, because we all belong to the one body of the loving and compassionate Christ. Death enables us to see further and more clearly than we ever could before, because not only can we see those who yet walk the earth, we also see those who have gone before us, because we are reunited with them. I am sure my mother ran joyfully into the arms of my grandparents whom she loved and missed deeply, just as I am sure that Patricia Pollitt was swept up in the embrace of her son, Andrew. The sorrow of parting from her family in the here and now must have been tempered by the joy of that reunion, and by the knowledge that in the blink of an eye all of God’s creation will be brought to the completion and perfection of God’s kingdom.


Death teaches us that while we might live this earth as though it were the only thing that mattered, there is something beyond it, an eternity we can only see dimly. The contours and texture of this eternity are hinted at in the love of family and friends, in the warmth of companionship, the satisfaction of creating and accomplishment.


Rest in peace, until we are one with you in Christ.

Fr Bruce Botha, SJ