This post is based on Week Seven of An Ignatian Prayer Adventure. It was an assignment from my spiritual director, who suggested writing a eulogy for Jesus because of how close I became to him in my imaginative prayer. While some of this piece is not historically or scripturally accurate, the words express my experience with Christ in prayer. The setting of this particular reflection took place after laying Jesus in the tomb and before the Resurrection.
Good morning, family, friends, and loved ones of our dearest friend Jesus.
While my history with Rabbi Jesus goes a long way, I met with him often, following as one of his disciples. And I, along with a couple others, was with him until the end.
I’d like to share a few words about our dear friend, Jesus. My first memory of him was at his birth. I remember Mary asking if I wanted to hold him. I was hesitant, but she placed him in my hands before I could do anything. I couldn’t stop gazing at him, and Mary stayed close by—embracing me and quietly whispering, “You’re part of the family now.” And it was then that I realized how much love would come into this child’s life.
Jesus showed love in his life just like his mother—by staying close, embracing, and whispering confidently to everyone, “You are a part of the family now.”
As he grew older, I became a faithful follower. I watched him change lives. I watched him inspire. I watched him challenge the current understanding of who we are called to love. I can’t tell you how many times I felt unworthy to follow him. At times I didn’t even understand the mission, but I knew he had faith in me. He brought out the greatness within me.
This is what Jesus did throughout his life. Not only did he teach about God’s love, but he lived God’s love. His actions brought out the best of people. He came to people that were on the margins—“the unworthy”—and made them aware of the greatness buried deep beneath the cultural and societal norms. With love and tenderness, he met people where they were, showing them they had worth. He showed them that they, too, were able to love and be loved. Jesus gave people a renewed sense of their lives.
We walked from town to town telling people that God loves them and that God forgives them. What’s more, we told them that we loved them—and we meant it, Jesus especially. If there was one thing he was good at, it was helping people grow into their own human dignity—moving people towards the full humanity that God calls all of us to live.
This is what Jesus did, for all those people, and for me. Jesus saved me.
My friends, today, Jesus is alive in my heart. And while his death was incredibly agonizing and unjust, it would be an even bigger injustice not to honor, remember, and celebrate his life.
May we never forget Jesus’ mission and dream for the world. May we continue to follow and share his dream with every people and every nation. It’s what he would have wanted.
My Lord, it has been an incredible honor. I love you. I miss you. I will see you soon.
Thank you Jurell. I just received your reflection from Ignatian spirituality today, Holy Saturday 2018. Unable to attend our Easter Vigil, I am deeply grateful for your words of The Eulogy. I read the title with some trepidation, having just grappled with writing and delivering my Dad’s.
But I found yours truly uplifting. Your love and faith shine through, and even more, our Lord’s love. Even though the first disciples had no understanding of the coming Resurrection , you showed what it means to know with certainty that He (pure Love) lives in our hearts forever. Thank you so much for this powerful and comforting witness.
I hope you will continue to write and share.
May Easter blessings fill you abundantly.
Love and gratitude x
This eulogy is so very powerful. As I read it I was drawn to think of my experience of the 19th Annotation. Truly life-giving. Thank you!
Thank you so much for your beautiful meditation…as I begin my day this Holy Saturday you have set the tone for a day of beautiful reflection and some tears of thanksgiving and joy.
The perfect piece to read on Holy Saturday. Thank you
An extraordinarily powerful and inspirational meditation. I cried through the entire eulogy. Thank you for sharing.
Jurell, As it is now 2017 this is a most belated THANK YOU! I recently found it and thought it was too good ,not to share with my fellow Vincentians at our recent St Vincent de Paul Regional Meeting. An inspiring and unique reflection. Members thought it was wonderful and reading it just before Easter, Excellent No one had ever seen or heard a Eulogy for Jesus before. God Bless and I hope you continue to inspire. Holy & Happy Easter 2017 from “The Land Down Under”. A.M.D.G.
Jurell, thank you so much! Wow! What a gift you have and happy are we that you share it with us.
These meditations are a “gift from heaven” Perfect for a Holy Week retreat, either private or group. I am very grateful for the authors who have so graciously and willing to share with us these pearls of Divine Wisdom.
With a grateful heart,
The eulogy calls to mind the personhood of Jesus. The Lord said to Peter,
The Lord asked
The Lord asked Peter, “who do you say that I am? This eulogy reminds me that I, too am being challenged each day to live my relationship
and to grow more aware of who He is. No mere man can tell us.
Thank you for your sharing a beautiful witness.
So, lovely! So simple. So moving! Thank you for sharing this. It tells me more of what Jesus wants us to do. Well done!
I found myself sitting on the ground outside the tomb, listening & crying. I felt during this time that my friend as well had died, and part of me was to blame. But i also feel wonderful . Thank you very much.
A wonderful meditation. Thank you.
Thank you, Jurell. You have inspired me to write a eulogy of my own in my journal. Yours makes Jesus so real, so present. Beautiful.
You show your graced gift in the writing of these reflections. Thank you for your contributions and they have helped me immensely. God bless you as we await Easter and the newness of life.
This was very wonderful, Jurell. Thank you so much for sharing this insightful exposition of Jesus’ life and your close relationship to him. I came away feeling “part of the family now.” What a help as I head into the celebration of the Triduum.
Wow! Very inspiring. I’m going to share this at the Men’s Cursillo here in Maine.