All of Mom's life, she was a person of faith. She always carried a little blue paperback prayer book in her purse. I have it now and the worn cover is a reminder of how she lived her life and how important her faith was to her. She went to church daily once she retired and she was very involved with the local church. She had friends at church and also called many of the priests her friend. Throughout the years there were special people in her life, but Father Brendan was one of her favorites. She just liked his sense of humor and his silver white hair and Irish brogue made him that much more likeable. While Mom was ill, Father Brendan would stop in to see her at The Meadows. He would leave his business card and then I knew he was there and that was always so special to me.
On Sunday, May 29th, 2011 Mom was close to the end of her earthly journey. Father Brendan had said Mass in the morning and just sensed that he needed to get out to see Alice. He had other obligations, but told his secretary that he just sensed this was urgent. He called me on my cell and I told him that she was very close and he said he was on his way. Within 30 minutes he was there. I, my sister, Bets, and niece, Jill, were also with Mom. We sat around her bed. She was so frail at this time; barely 60 pounds. Father and I held her hands and we just prayed. We sat there for 20 minutes or so and prayed and talked softly to her and Father told her it was time for her to go. It was time for her to be reunited with loved ones who had gone before her and in that moment Mom passed on. I looked at Bets and she nodded. Even at this moment that I write this I get a lump in my throat. For a woman of faith who had no control over her life for many years, she had total control of her death. She waited for Father Brendan to send her on her way. Those few moments will be remembered by all of us forever as the most peaceful and jubilant passing. Thank you, Father Brendan for acting on your instincts and making it all happen so beautifully.