Requiem Mass for Danielle Murphy died at 6 weeks, through ‘cot death’.
Hoppers Crossing, 5 January1989
“Then the Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces.” Isaiah 25:8
Do not be sad. Let the tears flow from your hearts, but do not be sad. Danielle is gone only for a short time. You will see her again and she will recognize you when you meet.
For nine months, Elaine, you carried Danielle in your womb. She heard your heart beat and she heard Tom’s voice. During those months both of you, Tom and Elaine, bonded yourself closely to your little child. You looked forward to the day of her birth. What joy you experienced as you held her in your arms for the first time. During the weeks that followed Danielle knew a mother’s love, Elaine, as you held her and fed her. She knew a father’s love, Tom, as you received her strongly in your arms and took her to your home. She heard you both speak and knew she was welcome in this world.
Now she is gone. Like a little bird that comes to your window sill, she has flown off again.
We have come here today to commend Danielle to God. God will receive her because she trusted completely, as babies do. She is holy because she was born to you, Tom and Elaine, who have been made holy in baptism.
We have come here to hear the word of the scriptures. The Prophet Isaiah tells us that God will wipe away every tear from our cheeks. He will wipe away the sorrow we feel at Danielle’s departure. We shall see her again. She will know the resurrection. Although she is buried as a child she will be raised, on the last day, in all the fullness of her faculties. Although she knows the weakness of death she will be victorious over every limitation. Although she died at 6 weeks she will be immortal.
Our God is loyal. He is master of life and death. Because you have wept over Danielle, he will raise her up on the last day. Our life is so short. Six weeks is short. Sixty years is short. Our God will give immortality to young and old because we have trusted in him. He will wipe away every tear from our eyes.
Look forward then with hope to the future. Be happy. Mourn your child. Take strength in your close family. Cherish young Thomas and Michelle, your other children. Look to the future with confidence, our immortal future, in heaven.