Reflections on a Catholic Family Funeral

   So much on my mind…
   I attended a family funeral in Baltimore yesterday. An uncle had passed. A very well-loved, quite intelligent man and wise and modest leader in the community. The service was held at a Catholic Seminary that I’ve driven by 1000’s of times but had never entered the grounds.
   The Virgin Mary holding Jesus greeted us as we entered the mammoth entrance. And Baltimore’s most distinguished Catholic bishops and priests along with my uncle’s son-in-law who is a beloved Presbyterian minister led the service.
   I reflected on how there were no women leading the service. And on my family and upbringing and the place of the Great Mother, or Earth Mother, and how those spiritual teachings so near and dear to me are so out on the fringe of how I grew up. I also pondered how so many people in that large chapel practice their faith (as I perceive it, at least).
   Yet there were some in the reception afterwards who understand my worldview as it has evolved. And for them I’m grateful.
   We need to come back to the wisdom of the Earth and learn how to live in sacred balance with her. We have no choice really.
   I honor my Catholic roots and find the Virgin Mary a powerful presence in my life these days. Along with Earth Mother, and the Great Divine Mother. But the demure Virgin Mary I learned about as a child is not what I experience spiritually these days when I tune into this powerful Divine Feminine consciousness. She is so much more powerful than that.
   My uncle was a highly intelligent, gifted man who steered several significant boards in the city. And he was asked to be the first chair of the Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore’s committee to investigate allegations of child abuse within the churches. This must not have been an easy position and yet his work was one of pursuing fairness and justice for the victims.
   He was also on President Nixon’s Black List for his plethora of letters to the former president (and President Johnson) on the wrongness of the Vietnam War. He also wrote letters to the Supreme Court for their decision-making with the Gore-Bush voting debacle. He was articulate and bold. I honored him for this greatly.
   There was so much more to my uncle than I ever knew. To me personally he was the quirky uncle who loved his rocking chair in the kitchen and enjoyed his chocolate sauce on ice cream at the end of every meal. He did reveal a far deeper side to me when I was younger and interviewed several in his and my father’s generation about their Grandmother Cromwell and what life was like in the huge house where my grandfather grew up with the butler, cook, gardener and more. His memories and insights about Grandmother Cromwell and her inner strengths were profound.
   I suppose my uncle never quite understand all my years of studies with Native American teachers. And my focus on this Sacred Earth on which we lived. Yet he was a great animal lover. He was the one who refused to have a cat given away. And loved the horses on the farm where he and my father grew up, in a way that none of the other siblings did from what I was told.

I’m certain that he was there spiritually yesterday in the huge chapel, and smiling and sending love down to all who had gathered to honor him and his contributions to Baltimore’s well-being. To honor his huge heart and quirky ways. And great intelligence and how he used it for the highest good in all he did.

   He was a good man. A very good man. And we shall miss him.
   And I deeply wonder now that he is on the other side how he perceives the Catholic Church. And the Great Mother. I do wonder.
   I know he stood for Love. A Great Divine Love… and this is surely the most important thing. Surely.
   Hugs, bigLove to all,

About Mare Cromwell

Referred to as “The Voice of Earth Mother” by a gifted Shoshone elder, Mare Cromwell is a multi-award-winning author, Medicine woman/Lightworker and healer. She has also been told by another gifted elder that her work with Earth Mother is in the prophecies. Her books include: "The Great Mother Bible"; "Messages from Mother.... Earth Mother"; and "If I gave you God’s phone number.... Searching for Spirituality in America". She has studied with Native American teachers for twenty-two years and sat on the World Council for Wisdom Gatherings for three years. Mare leads workshops on our Sacred Planet-Earth Mother, Womb Wisdom and Sacred Silliness and more. She is the visionary and producer of the 1000 Goddesses Gathering in Washington DC. Mare loves to be involved in Ceremony. She is also a former worm herder. She calls Western Maryland home.
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