Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father's house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

John 14:1-3
My sister kept saying her room wasn't ready. Now she's in heaven, but her ashes will be at my house today and I don't know how I feel about it.

It is Catholic tradition not to scatter ashes as we want our people whole for the "resurrection of the body". Yet, burial at sea? Perfectly acceptable. Go fig.

Also, retaining a loved one's ashes at one's home is also not acceptable as per Catholic tradition. Since her memorial has been postponed until April, however, I am very uncomfortable leaving her at the funeral home until then.  She was supposed to move in with us this week, anyway.  [We just didn't expect it to be like this.]

So what to do?

My mother was not Roman Catholic.  In fact, out of the five siblings, I am the only one who has embraced the faith, which embrace, dear readers, you know to be waivering at times.  Still, I am a practicing Catholic and I am now wondering if I have any business pushing my views off onto anyone else with respect to all of this.

Then there's this empty space.  A great chasm, a void that has been left indellibly since Mom passed.  Sure, I stepped up and did what was right by her during her last months, but my relationship with her wasn't nearly what I would have wanted it to be; and now, the time has passed.  Amends must be living, but to whom do I now make them.

My thoughts are as scattered as ... ashes.


annie said...

May God grant you peace and comfort, Penni.

Anne Welch said...

It is not counter to Catholic teaching to keep your mother's ashes in your house until you have found someplace to bury her. She is buried in the urn. In fact, the Trappists in Iowa support themselves by making coffins, and urns. They make both a small box for burying ashes and an urn for keeping them in the house.

When my father died, we received a letter for one of his friends, a Jesuit priest. He told us that my father now participated in the "beatific vision." That is, he was with God, and with eyes of compassion, was able to see and understand not only life in the present, but that in the past and future. He told my mother that, with his help, she could expect to find solutions to problems that had been confounding her and that came to pass.

Your mother now sees you with eyes of compassion and I can promise you, you will know she is present when things a mother can fix get fixed. Do not worry about amends. You are a mom too. The amends will be made by loving your sons and daughter.

Invocemus said...

In my Catholic family, the often quoted phrase was"offer it up" whenever something unpleasant had to be bore. This in of itself is very penitential when offered in union with Jesus' sufferings.

Fear not martha, dear Penni, you're sufferings are already co-redemptive, and therefore any amends you may feel the need to make are already done supernaturally.

What a beautiful soul you are.Its wonderful you care, because you love, to be accountable to the One Who made you that is God. How precious you are in His sight.

It is always a good and holy thought to pray for the living and the dead.
Many blessings to you this New Year to you and yours.

Jan said...

The Message calls God sometimes "the God who sets things right" He will sweetheart and in the meantime you are never alone.

Anonymous said...

My Mother died 3 mos. ago. while I was praying the Scriptual Rosary, the second sorrowful mystery on a Friday afternoon. We fought sometimes. I had Gregorian Masses said for her and other Masses after they were finished. I never thought I would miss her but I really do and it's so hard.

Eli said...

How poetic. I just wrote about my grandma's funeral. It can really be a though-provoking time. All the rules and rituals can be confusing. So sorry for your loss!

DL3 said...

A Pilgrim said...

Praying for you that God will heal you in His time...He always makes things beautiful.

Elena said...

Hi Penny,

I remembered how much you liked Lent, so I popped in to see how yu were doing and read about your mom. I'm so sorry for your loss. It's so hard to lose our moms. I h ope you are healing and feeling a bit better and I wish you a blessed Lenten season.

angelmeg said...

My mom stayed with me for a week (her ashes I mean) between her memorial mass and her burial in another state. In this case I think you need to remember, It is what it is. The best you can do for your mom is the best you can do, and if that means keeping her at home with you then that is what you need to do. said...

thanks you
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