Monday, April 7, 2008
What I want to say here is that there was an amazing spirituality about the service. It wasn't like the Episcopal church services that I used to attend. I have thought for some time that I was among the "frozen chosen" at those services. But this service was so different. It was a "Homegoing" service. Homegoing refers to the transition the dead make in leaving one world for another.
For one thing grieving outwardly is encouraged. And dancing and clapping of hands in a joyous celebration is encouraged. The choir sang gospel songs and the soloists had incredible voices. There were 12 ministers there and everyone had a powerful message and was an orator. It just seemed that I could feel the spirituality present in that church. My mind was totally focused on what was happening and not on anything else. It was an uncommon moment.
I walked out of that church enveloped in a bubble of peace. I felt that I had witnessed something very powerful. The grieving was outward, obvious and without restraint. It was a ritual, long practiced in this part of the coast. It's as if the funeral anguish becomes a venting of the community's broader grief.