It Doesn’t Get Easier

After I sent out an announcement of the death of a long-time parishioner and volunteer, Tom Southworth, a former colleague wrote to me: “I struggle with the number of losses associated with ministry (and realize the other perspective is gratitude for the number of connections.)”

I responded, “I totally agree about parishioners dying and you can be sure the grieving only gets worse.” As I walk around Murray Hill, I pass the apartment buildings of former members, now-deceased, and I think of how I still miss them. While the Lord provides new servants to do their work for the church and no one is irreplaceable, it is also the case that no successor is ever the same.

No one is exactly replaceable; losses are permanent. But, for that, thanks be to God! —J. Douglas Ousley


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One Response to “It Doesn’t Get Easier”

  1. Marina Phillips says:

    Dear Rev. Douglas,

    I am sorry to hear of Tom’s passing.
    In his little office while he was helping you,I was faxing my CV to prospective employers. He was a very sweet man.
    I am sorry for your loss.


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