05 March 2016

Soul Saturday - a day to commemorate the dead

Today is Soul Saturday. It is a day when Orthodox Christians pray for the peaceful repose of those who have Fallen Asleep in the Lord. It is a day that calls us to pray that God forgives your loved ones any sins they may have committed and that He grant them rest among His saints.

As I sat here this morning and considered how to apologize and explain my recent absence from pretty much the entire social world for the past month, I noticed a Church friend had posted about Soul Saturday on her Facebook page and I remembered that today was in fact a Soul Saturday.

So, how does this tie in with my disappearance? To be honest, my energy has been drained. February is always a difficult month for me. It’s my birthday month and I hate that. Three years ago, it was also the month my mother passed away. She died on the 5th at just 69 years. Her cousin – “Aunt” Nonie (Naomi O’Flaherty Catanese) died a few days later.
This year, on the 11th, we were just sitting down to dinner when I got the call that my cousin Teddy had passed away. To be more accurate, the police officer said they did a well being check on him and he had been found dead in his apartment. I was his emergency contact and he listed me as his next of kin. I am also his executer and that has been a whirlwind of learning experiences. He died unexpectedly of a heart attack. He was just 67.

A week later I got another call. Another cousin – Maria Ruczhak Toth – had passed. She died at home with her husband and children with her. She had been fighting pancreatic cancer for some time. She was 68, I believe.

I have been in a bit of an emotional fog for the last month. This month has not started out any easier as several family members are experiencing some serious health issues and concerns. For today those I remember and pray for those who have passed.

“For the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice.” (John 5: 28).

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2016

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