Yesterday, I attended another funeral for an aunt in a small Roman Catholic Church. I could not help but immediately noticing the two large statues upon entering, one a depiction of Mary holding a perpetual infant Jesus, and the other of Joseph doing the same thing.
My thoughts were sad that my aunt was gone, but also with the congregants and my RCC family. Many of whom I have witnessed the Gospel to, but still hold to the RCC, which tells me they rejected the Gospel of the their salvation.
I guess God planned it, but I sat alone in the only empty pew. My family glancing at me as I was not participating in the Mass. I could only hope they saw by my actions that they too should think about what they are doing. I was indeed an outsider surrounded by unsaved sinners and could only pray as I looked around that God would open their eyes.
The priest was without enthusiasm, a walking dead man is how I would describe him, no life whatsoever in his eulogy. But one striking detail I do recall is that he pronounced that my aunt was in heaven “having a party” with my other relatives and her husband. First of all, he bypassed the RCC teaching on purgatory, and second of all that was a comment made based on FB comments I was reading from my cousins. 30 years ago, a RCC priest would never declare such a thing, now they do at almost every funeral.
I could only hope she repented and believed the Gospel before her death, as the choir sang towards the end “Jesus, please remember me when you enter your Kingdom”, a line from the thief on the cross. Honestly, I would not know if she did, but based on her family’s actions and faith, my hope is fleeting.
The empty pew signified to me that although I have shared the Gospel, sent out books, sent out Bibles, sermons, CDs, Gospel tracts, many letters and emails, that in 8 years of this mission, my family has rejected me. Indeed the passage of which turned me from the RCC for good comes to mind, Mark 3:31-35, Jesus’ earthly family too rejected Him, and His statement was not to worry, that whoever does the will of God was His family.
The empty pew also signified that I was indeed an orphan, surrounded by unsaved unbelievers in my family. I can only pray as I looked over at my Mom, that her funeral is a much different occasion, that we celebrate her conversion into the Kingdom instead of listening to nonsense.
My aunt lived a good life! She had many children, grandchildren, was in good health for most of her 82 years, blessed by this life by God, but never turned from the RCC to His truth. I reserve judgment up to God and do not make condemnation, because I do believe one can have their heart changed up until the last breath of their life, nothing is impossible for Him, but if that is the case with her, she will possibly regret the life she lived away from Him, how her children are in peril now because while having rejected the Gospel, they too do now.
If there is a Catholic reading this, do NOT waste another day arguing on FB, do not waste anymore time in the RCC. When you pass away someday as we all will, you will have nothing to fear if you placed your faith alone in Jesus Christ, and your life will be a testament to His Gospel. The funeral for my aunt, that was no testament to the Gospel, as I looked around, the only thing I honestly saw was UNCERTAINTY, the walking dead. The priest can sprinkle gallons of “holy” water on your coffin, he and the congregation can recite repetitious prayers, he can dowse incense and even say you are in heaven, but none of this can SAVE YOU! NONE OF THIS CAN SAVE YOU! I repeat this because it is TRUE.
PLACE YOUR FAITH ALONE IN JESUS CHRIST TODAY, HE IS THE ONLY WAY, THE ONLY TRUTH, AND THE ONLY LIFE!