What a week!← Back
Last week we said goodbye to a number of people who have been significant parts in the life of the church here.
The first one was involved in the early days of the church and while unknown to many of the current folk, he was greatly loved and respected by those who have been around for a long while.
Roy Jones had moved on from Liverpool and spent the last part of his life in Reading. We do need to remember his wife, Katie and their three girls and their families.
This was also the week where we said our farewell to Julie Olson. She had only been with us for not much more than a year, but it was a very special time in Julie's life - and a great blessing to us too. Julie had been ill before she came, but for that year she had been well and was able to come to all the meetings and had got to know many people. She enjoyed that previous Alpha Course and shared with those on this current one just how she had been blessed and changed since coming to join us. It stands out in my mind that she said that she knew she had come 'home' the moment she walked through the door and came to her first meeting. And we could sense that too.
This is a contribution from someone who had got to know Julie and was looking forward to plans for the future - someone who didn't get the chance to say a proper goodbye.
Goodbye “our Julie”
“Hello our Julie” would be how I greeted you
And really ‘our Julie’ you became
For such a short time you were part of us
But long enough to become more than a name
We learnt so much about you Julie
including your enjoyment of singing
and that you were so very, very creative
with crochet, sewing and your knitting
How you travelled to Crosby each week
To care for your Dad and your Mum
Sandwich teas, gardening and jigsaws to finish
fabulous dolls houses furnished by Mum!
Together, one day during the summer
We made covers for the chairs in Reception
You, me and the girls
I’ve still got some waiting completion
We laughed over the measurements and pattern cutting
And those dodgy French seams
We chattered for hours about projects,
Fabrics, stiches and overlocking machines!
You were so excited to start volunteering
At CFS with me and the lovely year 3
Cross stitch bookmarks, samplers and art
I’m struggling to believe that now it won’t be
You came to ‘Devy Road’ seeking for something
I’m not even sure you knew what
But you found the love of Your Heavenly Father
And that changed “our Julie” a lot
You told me that now the Bible was real
The stories you told for years in your class
Were no longer ‘just stories’ of old to be read
That was a thing of the past
You were learning so much at church
Ladies’ Bible-studies, meetings and Alpha
God’s love had touched you and changed you
You even survived being on the tea rota!!
But Julie, I didn’t get to say a goodbye
And whilst it hurts to know that for now you are gone
I know that you’re with your Saviour in Heaven
And we’ll meet again when time on earth is done.
The final event of our week was that we recieved news that Elaine Chubb had gained promotion late on Friday night. She had been unwell for quite some time and died peacefully on Friday evening.
This is a bit of a P.S. as it records an event of another week - the Memorial Service for Elaine.
In the unfamiliar setting of a church we had never been to before, we were blessed to find that Elaine had been loved and cared for by people who loved the Lord just like us. The service was conducted with real sensitivity and care and held many unforgettable moments. Not the least was the reading from scripture by Elaine's grandson. He mastered both tears and fears to deliver a perfect reading, delivered with character and sense. None who were present could forget the sight and sound of this remarkable young man. We were also treated - if that is the right way to say of something in a memorial service - to a vivid picture of Elaine's life and walk with God.
The reception afterwards was also very special, giving ample opportunity to share time with the family and friends of Jimmy and Elaine.