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5th Sunday in Ordinary Time - February 9, 2020

Dear Friends in Christ:

Last week I had a horrific experience as part of a funeral procession that got me thinking “what has happened to our society?” Last Friday, as we pulled out in front of Saint Bridget Church I was in my car between the funeral director and the hearse. There were no cars coming but the funeral director waited for a car to come around the corner to get them to stop. The person slowed down but then proceeded to get between me and the hearse. She was now in the middle of the procession. The funeral director got out of his car to tell her she was now in a procession and, actually to his credit, was giving her a chance to get out of the procession and go ahead of us when all of a sudden she started to scream, using words I cannot print in our parish bulletin.

What has happened to our society? I was really bothered by this experience. I have been in other funeral processions on Route 10 when cars give it their all to get ahead of us before the two lanes turn into one lane. I have even been on highways when near accidents have been avoided thanks to the drivers in the procession. This experience last Friday really has been on my mind. Why are we so disrespectful to the dead?

When I was younger my parents ALWAYS pulled over and let the procession go by. They taught us from an early age to show respect for the dead. They told us when the procession is going by to stop and pray for that person even if you do not know them. It is the right thing to do and remember one day that will be you! We also were taught as the procession went by, if we were out of the car somewhere and had a baseball cap on to take it off as another sign of respect.

It is clearly obvious to many that younger drivers today are not being taught how to handle the oncoming funeral procession. But this driver was around my mother’s age. She was not a teenager though she had the language of a younger person I assure you. The problem is we live in a world that is getting busier and busier, more and more people could care less about giving the right of way to other drivers, or even respecting a funeral procession, because they feel they are too busy! Society tells us to be concerned with only one thing: me. This procession has nothing to do with me, and in fact it is inconveniencing me, so I do everything I can to get around it. Because society tells me to worry about myself.