Monday, February 4, 2013

The Week That Was

Well, last week was quite a dizzying week. Upon arriving home on Sunday after church, Executive Board meeting, and a shut-in call, I learned that my wife's grandmother had been called home to heaven. We had been making plans to visit her over President's Day weekend for her 99th birthday, but now began making plans to drive to Detroit this week for her funeral. I was supposed to be traveling to Florida this week for a Lutheran Haven Board of Trustees meeting, but would have to miss that.

So Monday was spent communicating with folks to cover my leaving, talking with the family, and making travel plans. I also spoke to our "Oma's" pastor in Michigan, who would be officiating at the funeral. He said it was Oma's wish to have me participate in the funeral, and he would like me to preach while he did the liturgy. I agreed (of course) and asked that he send me the readings so I could do so.

Tuesday I was at school all day, meeting with professors about my comprehensive exams and spending some time in the library, followed by catechesis in the evening.

Having received the service information from the pastor on Tuesday, Wednesday morning was spent writing the sermon, a quick exercise session, and packing. After getting the kids from school, we departed mid-afternoon. We missed the first part of the evening rush, but did get slowed a bit in Maryland. It rained most of this part of the drive, but was warm - about 70 degrees! But as we drove a cold front was pushing through, so it would not stay warm for long . . .

We spent the night outside of Pittsburgh, and on Thursday morning awoke to a temperature of 25 degrees and snow! So we drove through a light snow this day. Our wiper fluid was not working, but fortunately the road spray wasn't too bad - only had to stop a few times to clean the windshield. The traffic wasn't too bad either - and the accidents we encountered were all going in the opposite direction, including a 35 car pile-up due to a whiteout in Detroit on I-75 that closed the interstate in that direction all day! We got to our hotel in Utica, MI by mid-afternoon, changed, and went off to the funeral home for the viewing. That lasted until almost 9 pm, then back to the hotel to get some sleep.

Friday morning I awoke early and did a little sermon editing, then it was off for the funeral. The service went well, though I wish there had been more liturgy and hymns. Friday the morning temperature was 14 degrees! After the service we had a nice luncheon, followed by the interment in East Detroit in a not-so-nice part of town. But we had no problems. After that we drove back to Laurie's parents house, where we took a lot of family pictures and rested and decompressed a bit.

Saturday morning we got up early for the ten hour drive back home. It was still cold and snowy, so we didn't get very far before road spray became an issue for visibility. So we stopped to get it fixed. Found a very nice Midas place which blew out the frozen line and replaced our wiper blades at a very reasonable price. Then we were off. The snow made the first half of the drive home a bit slower than normal, and again, all the accidents we saw were on the other side of the road! We finally arrived home close to 10 pm.

So, a busy week! I somehow managed to get a sermon written for Sunday while in the car driving back on Saturday (while either my wife or son were driving; we took shifts) and working on it in the wee hours of Sunday morning. Wasn't able to be as prepared for Bible Class. But I am ever grateful to my congregation who are always so gracious and understanding with these things. After church was confirmation class, then home to rest a little before Spanish Bible Study at 7 pm. (Yes, I missed the first half of the Super Bowl! I got home at half time.) So I got to "watch" the second half . . . "watch" I say, for I was really dozing in and out and can't tell you how much I actually saw. Oh well. I didn't really want to Ravens to win, but thought they might - they looked more relaxed and the 49ers looked more uptight before the game started.

So, I'm looking forward to a quieter week! Got things to catch up on, as well as the usual schedule of classes and meetings. I have posted my sermons on our church blog [funeral sermon] and [Sunday sermon] if you want to read them. I'll get them on the church web site later this week. Now I need to prepare for our Psalm Bible Class this afternoon.

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