May He Who has power over the living and the dead, Who Himself rose again from the dead, Christ our true God, through the prayers of His Most holy Mother, of the holy and God-bearing Fathers, of all the Saints, assign to the abodes of the Righteous the souls of His departed servants. Give them rest in Abraham’s bosom, and number them among the just, and have mercy on us, for He is good and the Lover of mankind.
Покой, Господи, души усопших раб Твоих
Give rest, O Lord, to the souls of Thy servants
This Sunday marks the one-year anniversary of the passing of my wife’s mother Olga. Like many anniversaries it is often hard to understand the speed at which they come around, but this one ever the more so. The passing of a loved one is always difficult and even though it sounds cliché the passing of my mother-in-law was one I am still to comprehend.
Unfortunately I only had around ten years to really get to know her, many others were blessed with her presence for longer than this. There is a gaping hole left in our lives from her passing but many memories are left behind. For me the greatest memory is the chances I had to cook with her. Although it was often in the midst of trying to defy the nature of time to feed a last minute crowd or fulfill a giant order of piroshky in short order, these times provided an insight into her humble heart.
Even to this day I will often think of ringing her on the way home from work to see if she wanted to go to dinner a handful of us. I still think of dropping by to say hello after church when she was cooking at small Russian bistro; dropping by meant a few hours in front of the fryer or chopping board. Several minutes later the penny drops and the grief kicks in again.
While I still feel the emptiness at her passing I am comforted that her soul is in the hands of our Lord. Our conversations are now limited to prayers for her and our time together is left as memories stored in my heart. A reminder of my own mortality and to keep watch on the salvation of all those around me.
Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. 7 For they that sleep, sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. 8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. 9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. 11 Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do. – (1 Th 5:6–11 KJV)
So I am about to begin remembering my mother-in-law on this anniversary the only way that seems fitting, heading to the kitchen to cook food for those who will remember her together tomorrow. We miss you. I miss you. We always will.
Give rest eternal, O Lord, in blessed repose, to the soul of Thy departed servant Olga, and make her memory eternal