Father Everett Hemann left this earth to one year ago today and I truly believe he is still working through myself and so many others. To hear my recollection, please see my previous post.
This post however is a time for all of us to step back and praise God for the life we have. Fr. Ev "humanized" God and faith for me and I'm sure many others feel the same. He was a man to laugh with, pray with, drink with, but most importantly, break bread with. He always wanted to share a meal with you and talk about your life and tell stories. If God came into the conversation, great, but there was never any pressure. Oddly enough though, God was always in the conversation, even if He wasn't directly spoken about. The conversation, the laughter, the community that was made around the table truly brought meaning to the words "where two or more are gathered in my name, there I will be."
Below is a small story that was once told by Ev in a homily. It's a fitting story for a man like Ev and everyone else that looks beyond.
The story is told of a man driving in the country with his seven-year-old granddaughter. As they were driving down a gravel road the young girl suddenly took her hands off the wheel and screamed, "The road is coming to an end! Stop the car!" Grandpa informed her that the road really was not coming to an end but was going to take a very sharp corner around a rove of trees and even though she could not see the road- it appeared to end-- it was very much there. He assured her that he had been down this road before and he knew that it continued on after the turn.Fr. Ev is still among us today, we just can't quite see him around the corner. But he is still there watching, praying, and telling us, "let me be your servant."
Now, Master, dismiss your servant in peace. You have fulfilled your promise. My own eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all peoples.
Father Everett Hemann,
Pray for us.