Our friend Catherine Wieczorek passed from this life on January 8th of this year. She died in her sleep at aged 68. She had not been ill, so her death was blissfully sudden, but horribly unexpected.
This was a cruel shock to us, especially because Catherine had given a wonderful party on January 1st. She was a great host.
With the exception of her partner Denise, Catherine's family is spread about the United States. This meant that a Memorial Service for Catherine could not be held until today. It took place in a Funeral Home and in a room which was crowded - with maybe 140 mourners.
After a song by one of Catherine's circle of friends, and a poem by another, Denise delivered a loving eulogy.
Then came the readings and prayers for Christian Burial. These were led by my good and local friend Bob Lewis, and by me - hence the "Clerical Two-Step"
Bob is in fact The Revd. Robert Lewis, an Episcopal Priest who was a Rector in Hudson NY, before retiring, and later moving to Sarasota.
Bob and I shared the leadership of the service for Catherine (who was herself an Episcopalian). It was a honour to do so.
Many of our friends (who know that we are retired Priests) see us at bowling, at various and sundry parties, and at dinners of one sort or another. But this was the first time that most of them had seen us in our sober suits and clerical collars. It was cause for a double take.
I was gently delighted at being able to share in a Christian service with my pal Bob. It all felt very natural and normal.
And we pray for Catherine and her family, and for Denise.