You Know Not The Day Or The Hour

2023년 11월 12일

You Know Not The Day Or The Hour

<  Thirty – Second Sunday in Ordinary Time >

 Many years ago at Friday Night Meeting, we discussed death, as November is the month we remember all souls. The students were given questions to think about. The final question was: “What do you want written on your tombstone?” One girl responded, “I’m too young to think about these things.” She was wrong. Before the next FNM she and her boyfriend were killed in a head-on collision on the L.I.E. by a woman with a suspended license driving under the influence in the wrong direction. What compounded the tragedy is her boyfriend was not Catholic and his parents did not approve of their relationship. The two dead students were waked at different funeral homes. Forty students went first to pay respects to the girl. The funeral home was filled with Catholics, relatives and friends. Then the students walked to the other funeral home. It was nearly empty. Just the parents and siblings were there. But the parents could hardly believe their eyes when two, by two, by two all forty students entered and placed a red rose on the closed coffin.

The next FNM we held a memorial service. Two empty chairs with lit candles represented our dead classmates. Both sets of parents attended.  Too bad it took a tragedy to bring us all together to appreciate one another. Jesus warns us: no one knows the day or hour of our death. Therefore we must live each day to the fullest, be accepting and understanding of others, strive to be on good terms with most people. Be kind. Be generous. Be forgiving. We know not the day or the hour.

The poem “No Man is an Island” by John Donne
concludes: Any person’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in humankind.
And therefore never send to know
For whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.