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Friday, October 26, 2007

My Mom's Funeral

Today was my mother's funeral. It was a beautiful service with many friends and family. All of my 5 brothers had a special part in the service today and the vigil last night. I want to thank so many of you for keeping my mother in your prayers. I said a short Eulogy at the end of the service and thank God I did get through it without breaking down....

Eulogy - Funeral Mass
Elizabeth Clare Kearns

There is so many things that could be said about our mother, but I thought I would take just a few moments to highlight some of her special qualities.

The first thing she would want to remind us is that although you might be feeling a little sad, she would remind you that today is actually a celebration of life, not death.

If you had the opportunity to know my mother, you would of probably of known that she had a life that included a lot of struggle;

Never knowing her Father, since he died while she was still in her mother’s womb;
Losing her first child, Cathy, after only 1 day of life;
A life of serious mental health struggles;
Raising 6 "not so perfect" sons, not an easy task;
and Struggling with Parkinson’s disease.

However, she never complained. She kept a positive attitude and was always more concerned for others and their struggles.

Mom was a advocate and a friend to the needy. After my Father died, mom’s passion became running what was called "the sandwich shop" at her church in Marysville. Each day the homeless would make their way to the church to get their sandwich for the day. They all knew mom and mom knew them by name, and she even knew what type of sandwich each person liked, whether it was bologna, or peanut butter and jelly.

Mom had the ability to see good in everyone and everything. For the longest time, I thought Mom was always making excuses for everyone, however, as the years went on, I realized that she actually didn’t see their faults, but rather only their good.

Last but not least, Mom was our primary teacher of the faith. She never preached to us, but always lead by example. We watched her live the Gospels each day and always maintained a child-like trust in our Lord. She wouldn’t cease to amaze me with her humble wisdom.

Mom only lived in Redding for a few years. She moved here when she needed to live in an assisted living setting. Again, trying to see the positive, she decided that the reason she was in the facility must be to help the older residents feel better about themselves, visiting with them and sharing the faith.

It became so common to have someone walk to up me stating that mom had really touched their lives so deeply. It amazed me that even though Mom really didn’t leave the assisted living facility often, almost weekly someone at church would come up to me and ask about my mom, or state that they visited her last week and that they were going back to see her again because she made them feel so good.

She truly loved people and they loved her.

Mom kept giving even until the end. Mom eventually moved into my brothers home, Dan and Lori’s home. And all of our families were able to spend so much time with her. We feel so blessed that we were able to help her, with what we describe as, "walking her home."

Even through the last days of her life here on earth, she never complained, she kept thanking us, she didn't want to be a burden. Even when she couldn’t speak any longer, she would just smile the biggest smiles toward heaven and give us reassuring looks of love and peace.

She filled our lives with so much love and joy, it is beyond what I can describe.

I want to thank Dan, and especially his wife Lori for creating such a peaceful place for Mom in your home. Her room was beautiful and Holy, covered with "everything that was mom," and they always had beautiful music placing in the back round. She was smothered with hugs, kisses and love. Even when the hospice nurses came to the home, they stated that everything was perfect....and how mom was so full of peace.

There is so much more that can be said about Mom, she was such a special and wonderful person, but I will stop here.

Again, I want to thank everyone for all of their recent support, their prayers, and for being a part of this celebration today. I also want to Thank my Mom’s sister, Carina, and her son Jeff, who traveled so quickly from North Dakota to be here today.

After the conclusion of the service, Please join us in the parish hall next door for lunch that has been prepared for all of us by the Martha’s. It would also be a great time to share your stories of Mom.

Thank You.

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