In the Catholic Church, there are 7 Spiritual works of mercy. Some of them are: Counsel the doubtful, bear wrongs patiently, instruct the ignorant. Comforting the sorrowful is the spiritual work of mercy that friends, family and acquaintances have been offering the Connors family ever since the terrible tragic day of Dec. 31, 2012. Eleven year old, Liam, tells his mother that his 13 year old brother, Nolan, looks sick. Mom walks into Nolan’s bedroom to find his lifeless body on the bed. For reasons yet to be known, the young boy had passed away sometime in the night. I can’t even imagine how she must feel. Only once for less than a minute did I feel like something terrible MIGHT have happened to one of my kids. That was the longest minute of my life. I was physically nauseated and an emotional whirlwind. I cannot wrap my brain around that minute lasting for an hour, a day, months or years.I can think of one mother & father who lost their son, their only son. The mother was the most loving and nurturing, not only to her son but to everyone young & old. There is no one that was more undeserving of such suffering. Her son not only died a violent death but she had to clean up the bloody mess. Watching Nolan’s grandpa clean up the blood that was spilled by the EMT’s reminded me of this story. The parallels were striking. I know that Jill could seek comfort from this mother. Her name is Mary, our spiritual Mother in Heaven. Jill & Patrick are feeling abandoned by God as they suffer, have no answers and do not see the point of robbing them of their precious boy. Another person that can relate to this feeling is Jesus. God’s Son even felt abandoned by His Father, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” He felt abandoned by the same Father that took Nolan. The parallels of Jesus’ death and Nolan’s death do not stop with feeling abandoned by God. The story continues. With the death of Jesus came redemption, mercy, the opening of heaven, blessings, graces and more graces being poured out. The death of Nolan will and has brought redemption, mercy and graces that I thought would be sprinkled everywhere. How naïve I was!! There has been a downpour of graces that I can’t WAIT to tell you about!
People are coming out of the woodwork giving support to this family. The funeral plans were immediately paid for in full by an anonymous donor. Thousands of dollars were collected, flowers, gifts and gift cards are overflowing their home. The outpouring of comfort is constant. Everyone wants to do more.
“What do they need?”
“How can I help?”
“Do they have clothes for the funeral?”
“Do the boy’s need haircuts?”
“How are they with food?”
“Do they need help cleaning up for company?”
“Are all of their appliances working?”
“Do they need a deep freezer for all their meals?”
“Tell me what to do!!?”
To begin with, friends from the homeschool community set up a breakfast/lunch/dinner schedule for 2 months straight. The slots filled up quickly. They were inundated with food and supplies by day 3. The donated deep freezer was on its way!
Within 3 days, all the kids clothes….shoes, belts, tie’s, socks, dress shirts, dresses, stockings, suit pants & jackets were bought and delivered for all of the kids. A generous wife & mother, Linda, made a wonderful video tribute of Nolan and worked together with my husband to get it set up and on display for the visitation and funeral. There were visitors and playdates for the surviving kids to keep them distracted and happy.
Although the outpouring of support was overwhelming and miraculous, people were still left with all these feelings that they needed to do more.
And more came….:))
To Be Continued……