It’s tradition for Filipino Catholics to hold mass and celebrate on the 40th day after a loved one passes.
This is said to mirror the time that Jesus spent after his resurrection with his disciples before he returned to his father.
So today we had the 40th day mass at the house here.
It was interesting because it was partially in Illicano (A filipino dialect) and partially in English. And while I didn’t understand every single word I did understand the intent of it all.
The father who presided over the mass was also the one who anointed Mona with the Blessing of the Sick…and it was comforting to see him again. He did such a wonderful job when he came those months ago.
The father shared a story of his childhood with us that resounded with me so massively.
He spoke about how when he was young he always asked his mother questions….and one of the questions he asked was when looking at gravestones there would be the Birthdate and the Death date on the tombstone with a – in between those dates.
He asked his mother what the “-” meant….
His mother told him that while most people focus on the dates, the most important part was the “-“.
When he asked why, she explained to him that it was because the – represents the LIFE of the person between those two dates.
It’s the culmination of what they did while here with us amongst the living.
I will never look at a – the same ever again…for it’s true. That tiny little mark is indeed the summary tucked between numbers or letters.
He then looked at me and said Monas – must have been amazing…because the amount of people he saw at her services when he came to them was staggering.
And that’s our job…to affect one another. To hold each other up and pass on the good that we know.
I miss you Mona. Incredibly.
11/2/74 – 6/8/17