No time to say goodbye

Sent: Sunday, October 23, 2005 3:28 PM
 Hi, still cannot get over the shock of Sr Esther’s death. Did you meet her? I was thinking of giving her a long reply…learnt a lesson…no need to worry about anything too far ahead. God takes care of everything. Sr Esther was always concerned about her high blood pressure….Praise the Lord!


I happened to see the above email and it is a very old one. I had kept it.

Who was Sr Esther? She was an Indian missionary sister whom I had met in Kenya. She was such a jovial person, so full of smiles and laughter. She was also a very simple lady who would share with me very freely. We got along well in the short time that I was there and I still remember the masses and the meals we had had. How can I forget the French toast she prepared with so much joy each morning for our breakfast? Indeed, Sr Esther left a deep impression on me.

When I returned, I would receive news from her – little notes and cards. We met again on another two occasions and then it happened – her sudden death. A friend had gone over to Kenya and she had brought me a letter from Sr. Esther. The rest is as I had written in my email above.

Can one ever get over a sudden death? It would take time, and lots of trust and faith. Sr Esther was not the only person I knew who had died without a chance to say farewell to anyone. It is a phenomenon that occurs again and again. I was at a funeral recently and the deceased had died of a heart attack. There was no warning. There was no time for any of the family members to recollect their thoughts. What would have been the regrets? What would have been unfinished? A goodbye unsaid. A hug not given. An embrace withdrawn.

It makes one ponder, doesn’t it? NOW is the time to do what needs to be done. Let us hasten to love those around us. . . tomorrow may never come!