“My Portion is the Lord” — Funeral Homily for Audrey Schillinger, 87

By Fr. Victor Feltes

When her husband, Marvin, passed away in 2013, Audrey became a widow. In these recent years, she has endured breast cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and other bodily ailments. We all walk through dark valleys in this life. Who strengthened Audrey to endure all of this with unconquered joy? She was not alone through her trials. She had her dear friends, siblings, sons, and granddaughters, but most importantly of all, Audrey had the Lord Jesus. With him, as we heard from St. Paul’s Second Letter to the Corinthians, “although our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.”

Her Lord, the Good Shepherd, was near. The 23rd Psalm says of him: “You spread the table before me… and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord for years to come.” For many years, Audrey faithfully approached the Lord, at his table in this, his house. She came here to St. Paul’s Church for Mass every Sunday until the arrival of the pandemic. Thereafter, concern for her vulnerable health kept her at home but she continued to watch the Mass on TV. Yet the Lord Jesus still came to her and she eagerly welcomed him to her home.

Rod Ramlow (the lector for today’s funeral) and his wife Betsy have lived next door to Audrey since 2016. In the final seasons of her life, each Sunday morning, Rod brought Jesus Christ to Audrey in the Holy Eucharist. Rod tells me that when he would arrive at her door, he would have barely rung the doorbell when Audrey would quickly answer. He says it was as if she were practically waiting at the door. Like we heard from the Book of Lamentations: “My portion is the Lord… Good is the Lord to one who waits for him, to the soul that seeks him.

As an aside, are you or someone you know homebound or greatly hindered from coming to Mass? Please contact the parish office so we can organize Holy Communion to be regularly taken to you or them. Others have simply neglected to come back to church without good reason, or else they have never known that Jesus is really here in the Holy Eucharist. Whatever the case, the Lord awaits to encounter them.

Who does Jesus tell us is blessed, or blest? We just heard from St. Matthew’s Gospel the Beatitudes of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. Jesus says, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.” Someone who knows the poverty in their spirit or soul, will seek out and rely on the Lord’s fullness and strength. Jesus says, “Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.” Someone who hungers and thirsts for righteousness, will hunger and thirst for the Righteous One. Jesus says, “Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.” Someone whose heart is clean or pure — uncluttered by lesser things — will intensely desire God. Audrey sought out and relied upon Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. She hungered and thirsted for him, saw him and received him, the one who drew her to himself. So today, as we pray for her soul, we have well-founded hope that the desire of Audrey’s heart will be satisfied by entering the Kingdom of Heaven to be with her Lord.

One Response to ““My Portion is the Lord” — Funeral Homily for Audrey Schillinger, 87”

  1. pussywillowpress Says:

    Eternal rest grant unto Audrey, O Lord…

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