Several recent encounters with grieving parents and with the Scriptures today caused me to reflect on how we cope with grief.
As we celebrated the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord this weekend I was reminded of the words of Simeon who engaged Mary when she and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple to present him to the Lord. Simeon told her that a sword would pierce her heart and that her son was destined for the rise and fall of many. That sword would not only pierce the heart of Mary but it would also pierce the hearts of believers everywhere, parents who grieve the loss of a child or agonize when their child suffers injury.
Just as Jesus came into the presence of Simeon and Anna when he was brought into the temple, he also came to the official’s daughter who was sick and the older women who needed healing. To the women who touched him Jesus said, your faith will save you, your faith will bring you comfort and consolation.
When Jesus tells us that faith will bring us comfort and consolation he is asking us to confide in Him and we will find rest for our soul, that from Him comes our hope and salvation.
Many who grieve the loss of a loved one will say that it is not the fact that there is no joy in life, it is because there is no hope. Jesus tells us to hope in Him, He alone will be a rock of safety, strength.
Faith asks us to trust in God and pour out our hearts to him and we will find refuge for our fear and pain. The hole that is in the heart of those who grieve may never go away but faith can dispel the darkness that often overshadows those who grieve.
As families gather for prayer today let us pray for families who are grieving that they find peace and the assurance that God has not abandoned them.
About Father Leo Polselli, C.S.C.
Father Leo Polselli, C.S.C. is Chaplain at the Father Peyton Center in Easton, MA. Before coming to Holy Cross Family Ministries he served as a teacher and a parish priest. He also served for six years as a General Assistant of the Congregation in Rome, Italy. Originally from Fall River, MA, Father Leo grew up with eight siblings. Gifted with several languages, he is able to serve the Brazilian, Cape Verdean, Portuguese, Spanish and Haitian communities. When he's not greeting everyone who comes to the Father Peyton Center, you can find him regularly reading newspapers!