I Am Ready to Go…
A Tribute to Michele Birch-Conery, bishop arcwp written by Mary Eileen Collingwood, bishop arcwp and shared at the anointing of Michele by our communities (arcwp/rcwp/HOC) on Zoom 13 Sept 2020.
In St. Francis of Assisi’s great ‘song of creation’, he declares that death is the grace that leads us home.
As J. Phillip Newell writes: Death is not the end, but rather a doorway through which we pass.
And in the spirit of T. S. Elliot:
Our dear Michele,
You are still and still moving into another intensity,
Through further union, a deeper communion
Through the dark cold and the empty desolation,
the wave cry, the wind cry, the vast waters of the petrel and the porpoise.
In your end is your beginning.
You are moving further into life through a tender and embracing grace.
In both your lived life and your dying, you are being renewed in that part of yourself that is rooted in Eden.
Celtic tradition sometimes refers to death as ‘the great sleep of Jesus.’
Michele, may this divine sleep bring you to what is deepest and truest within yourself.