As we prepare to celebrate the many strides that have been made in the last ten years with the passage of AD& an article from the publication “Inroads,” a monthly publication that highlights strides that parishes are making in becoming more inclusive, came to mind, This article is a reflection on resurrection, whether you are a believer of resurrection or not, this article also is a positive look to the future. ‘The best is yet to come’, so also with the ADA.
There was a woman who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness and had been given three months to live. So as she was getting her ‘things in order,’ she contacted her pastor and had him come to the house to discuss her final wishes. She told him which songs she wanted sung at her funeral, what Scripture readings she would like read, and what outfit she wanted to be buried in. The woman also requested to be buried with her favorite Bible.
Everything was in order and the priest was preparing to leave when the woman suddenly remembered something very important, to her. “There’s one more thing,” she said excitedly.
“What’s that?” came the pastor’s reply.
“This is very important,” the woman continued.
“I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand.”
The priest stood looking at the woman, not knowing quite what to say.
“Does this surprise you?” the woman asked.
The bewildered priest answered, “Well, to be honest, I’m puzzled by this request.”
The woman went on to explain: “In all my years of attending socials and pot luck dinners, I always remember that when the dishes from the main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, ‘Keep your fork.’ It was my favorite part because I knew that something better was coming … like velvety cake or deep dish apple pie, Something wonderful and with substance! So I just want people to see me there in that casketwith a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder the fork?’
Then I went you to tell them : ‘Keep your fork – the best is yet to come.'”
The priest’s eyes welled up with tears of joy as he hugged her good-bye. He knew this would be one of the last times he would see her before her death. But he also knew that this woman had better of heaven than he did. She knew that something better was coming.
At the funeral, people were walking by the woman’s casket and they saw the pretty dress she was wearing and they saw her favorite Bible and they saw the fork placed in her right hand. Over and over, the pastor heard them question, “What’s with the fork?”
During his homily the priest told the congregation of the conversation he had had with the woman shortly before her death, He also told them about the fork and what it symbolized to her. He went on to tell the people how he could not stop thinking about the fork. As he, ended his sermon he said, “Always remember, the best is yet to come,”
So, when you pick up your fork, remember that, because of ADA, “The best is yet to come!”