Went to Kurt's brother's funeral today at Trinity Lutheran Church in Nokomis. Pr. Eickhoff preached a wonderful homily (which he naturally had difficulty getting through - Karl was not only his parishioner but his friend). Karl had attended Bible Class on Wednesday morning, and on his way home was stricken by an aneurism. He just had time to pull his truck off the road, and his earthly pilgrimage came to an end. I always enjoyed the little chances we had to chat over the years - Karl faithfully attended the District elder workshops (usually held at St. Paul's), and of course the various confirmations of his niece and nephews over the years. Please keep his wife Sandy and his boys in your prayers - as well as his parents, Gene and Mary Ann, and his brother Kurt and his wife Julie. I reminded Karl's parents this afternoon that because they knew this moment was coming, just not when, they had their little son baptized into Christ and given a life that death can never rob him of.
Death, you cannot end my gladness,
I am baptized into Christ.
When I die, I leave all sadness
To inherit paradise.
Though I lie in dust and ashes,
Faith's assurance brightly flashes:
Baptism has the strength divine
To make life immortal mine.
There is nothing worth comparing
To this life-long comfort sure.
Open-eyed my grave is staring,
Even there I'll sleep secure.
Though my flesh awaits its raising,
Still my soul continues praising.
I am baptized into Christ;
I'm a child of paradise.
As far as I'm concerned that hymn has become THE funeral hymn to beat all others.
Rest in peace, Karl, until the glorious appearing of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ!