Jesus continued, “I’m telling you these things while I’m still living with you, the Advocate, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send at my request, will make everything plain to you”. (John 14: 26)
Her family has moved away long before I arrived at the parish. Her last years were spent in a nursing home somewhat interstate. When she died her children called the parish. We were where she wanted to have her funeral Mass celebrated. We had been her church for decades. There would only be a handful in attendance. At the funeral home, the family made it clear that none of them were practicing their faith anymore. I should select all the music and read the scripture of my choosing. Nothing special to say in my homily. No eulogy. No cemetery burial.
I left the wake wondering if I had just wasted my evening. As I passed the adjacent parlour a young man stepped out calling my name. After a few seconds I recognised his face and remembered his name – a student I had taught years ago and hadn’t seen since graduation. I saw on the sign in the parlour that the deceased was his father. Excitedly he told me that he had convinced his mother I would somehow be there, that I would never let them down. How was I able to do that, not being contacted, was a mystery to me. Calling him by his name, I assured him I was there for them. I said a prayer, comforted the family, and drove home again appreciating the mysterious way the Holy Spirit uses us. A Pentecost moment for sure.