The lore is that our Mum and Dad had chosen her first name, and that it was a next door neighbour, one Mrs. Charlton, who said "give her JOY as a middle name, because she will always be a joy to her parents.
So my sister is Maureen Joy.
Mrs. Charlton (we called her Auntie Charlton) was wonderfully and prophetically right.
"Our Maureen" has been a consistent source of joy wisdom and counsel all these eighty years:
To our parents
To her siblings and their spouses, children and grand children
To her fabulous and beloved husband Bernard
To their four children Nicholas, Louise, Emma, and Anne.
To her daughter in law Lesley, and her sons-in-law David, Brett and Stuart
To her grandchildren, James, Hannah, Imogen, Molly, Isaac, and Olivia.
We, her immediate family, adore, respect and love Maureen.
And not just her family members There is a wider circle of people who bless God because Maureen crossed their paths: not least the members of Kensington Baptist Church, a multi-racial Church in the multi-cultural district of Easton, Bristol. Maureen has been a vital part of that Church and its ministry for close to sixty years.
Her faith in God-in-Christ is firm and unshakable, She will gladly "witness" to this, but she will never "push" her beliefs on those who do not share them.
Maureen has visited me thrice in the U.S.A. (Bernard twice). My American compatriots who have met them in Massachusetts, in Florida, (or in the U.K), will attest with me that she (they) are the best.
Don't you wish that you had a big sister like Maureen? She is indeed an utter Joy!
|Bern and Maureen on our 2015 ocean cruise from Bristol, U.K. to Norway and back.|