This afternoon our Grandma – my mother-in-law from my first marriage – slipped out of this world and went home to Heaven.
A kind, patient, gentle woman, full of faith with a particular quality of innocence, and integrity . She had a ready laugh and was always the first to offer what she could when any of us were in need of help.
When my children were little, Grandma and Grandad’s place was a second home. Too many to count, the roast dinners she cooked us every Sunday. We’d all pile in after church, littlies to bed in the cots she had dotted about in the bedrooms, then the adults enjoyed lunch together while the children napped. As one by one they woke up, often Grandma was the first upstairs to fetch them down, playing peek-a-boo as she opened the bedroom door.
They loved the books and dressing up box, the paddling pool and wigwam, the dolls’ houses and many other toys at Grandma and Grandad’s house.
She was our main baby-sitter, and every week when she did her own grocery run she would call by our place with two big bags of goodies to help out with our big family.
When my youngest was born she would come by every week to take my twins (then nearly three) to the beach for an ice-cream and to play by the sea.
Grandma was the one who made sure my oldest child remained a little girl even though she had four younger sisters – she was always Grandma’s special little one, and Grandma held the boundary, ensuring big sister had a space to be unburdened by responsibility.
A housegroup leader for years, the one who headed up the pastoral team at chapel, the confidante of countless ministers who learned they could trust her kindness, wisdom and discretion, she supported every church event imaginable – including Boys’ Brigade camp.
She and Grandad were a brilliant team – lovers, friends and partners in building Christ’s kingdom.
A staunch Methodist, she loved hymnody and often used to say “Methodists sing their faith”. This was one of her favourites:
Her passing was serene and gentle. As we sat with her this day, we felt peace and beauty fill the room and observed the kindness and tranquillity in her face.
May she rest in peace and rise in glory.