Recently, I attended a memorial service for the mother of a dear friend. It was a lovely remembrance of her life -- her loving personality and character…a beautiful picture of a quiet, faithful woman.
As I sat in the church, my thoughts revisited the years of my youth. The pews held many dear women, mothers of other friends from our small community. I was surprised to see them, fragile and elderly…In my memories, they are much younger. Still, they were sitting beside their family and friends as they had back in the days of my memory -- the connections strong. Many I had not seen for a long time but was touched to receive their friendly greetings, and queries after the health and well-being of my own parents.
It was good to go to the church basement and see them gathering to talk and eat the ham buns and cookies that are the staple of such fellowship. The continuity of community is a great comfort. These people, their lives still connected, still firmly standing in support of one another…relationships that began when ours was a town of only 2000 souls. Today, it is seven times that.
Certainly, things have changed, and some not for the better, but the heart of this community continues to be faith, loyalty, diligence, and standing firm in support when there is need. That is a history that connects us all, unchanged though hair becomes grayed and bodies become frail. This spirit is strong, and I pray that it is multiplied to all the souls that have been added, whether by new generations, or new acquisitions.
I love this town. I am grateful for its people.