...have mercy on us and on the whole world.
I don't usually talk about hugely personal stuff on here aside from a little bragging about my kids. And I don't talk about my faith for fear of turning people off. But I'm going to go ahead and just say a few things. 'Cause this is my blog and I'll cry if I want to.
Right now one of the most incredible men I've ever known is in a hospital room taking his last breaths surrounded by loved ones. My husband's grandfather is passing away. He's not expected to last more than a few hours at this point. He is 82 years old. Father of 9. The youngest of those 9 kids was 2 when he was widowed. He has 40 some-odd grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren (3 of whom are still baking in their mama's ovens). He is the single most generous person I've ever known. And he will be sorely missed. It is no exaggeration to say that Grandpa is the patriarch of my husband's extended family. I don't know what everyone will do without him.
This is the man who delivered me to Jesus Christ. Seeing him walk in the light, seeing him so faith-filled and grace-filled and consumed with the Holy Spirit is what made me say "I want what he's having!" He is fed by Christ. So while there is a river of tears swelling up all around our family right now, there is comfort in knowing that Grandpa is certain to inherit the Kingdom.
I know some of you are Catholic, and you may recognize the line in my heading from the Divine Mercy Chaplet. If anyone thinks about it or is so inclined, I would be ever so grateful to anyone who would want to pray a Divine Mercy Chaplet or just pray as your heart desires for my husband's grandfather William Erker, Sr. and his family. We are overwhelmed with grief.
I leave you with a picture from LadyBug's baptism this past summer. That's me with the sweet baby in the middle. And that's Grandpa down in front on the right. He never missed a graduation, a wedding, a first Holy Communion, a baptism, an anything. And all those other people in the picture...well that's the love that he and we are surrounded by! That is a tiny fraction of DH's extended family (and my sister among them) - the ones that could come to witness LadyBug's baptism.
I'm sorry to unload my sadness here. I just thought it never hurts to reach out and ask for prayers at a time like this. You are all so wonderful.
Edited to add: Grandpa passed at about 5:40 pm St. Louis time. He was surrounded by family singing hymns and praying together. Thank you all for your prayers and your comforting words. I cannot even express how wonderful they have been to hear.
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