I remember the day my dad passed. It was March 13, 2003.

Driving home that day I remember seeing the things I had seen my entire life and yet feeling so unfamiliar. This was the first time I had seen these things without my dad. It was as if my soul was screaming out to the world to slow down and hold up… it was missing somebody. It was leaving someone behind.

And yet still… the world continued on.

Life happens.

As I drove to the hospice house today to pay my respects to the recently departed Constantino Bustos-Cruz, I pondered this.

Who was crying out to the world to slow down and hold up for him?

In a world of 7 billion people, to die alone can no longer be but in this case for the love of a friend, Meg.

For  Tino, certainly he passed with no family to be seen or friends at his side, but because of Meg, I am certain he did not die alone and feeling unloved or unknown.

For it was only the day before when Meg visited Tino and held his hand. And with eyes closed and all the strength I am sure he could muster, he tapped her hand as if to say.. I love you too. I know you are here.

The singer/songwriter Bruce Cockburn once wrote.. to be in the heart of a friend is to be king. And it is at that moment as Tino was nearing the end that I know that I know that I know that he must have felt like he was king.

He was in the heart of a friend and will remain there forever.

Who was crying out to the world to slow down and hold up for him? My friend Meg was.

In a world of 7 billion people, all it takes is one to carry another within their heart in their darkest hour to make this hour no longer dark… but as bright as the noonday sun.

You know, in life… we all have a role. Are you living yours?

As I sat there and looked upon the lifeless body of Tino, I pondered… why does it take death to bring such peace?

Thank you Meg for ushering in that peace at just the right time.

For who will you usher in that place of peace for this year?

And in doing this, may it not take death to bring it about but each of us playing our part living life with our eyes wide open.

Who will cry out for the least of these when they are gone? In the new year, may it not take them leaving before we begin crying out for them.

Is someone in your heart? Do they know they are king or queen? If not, make it so. Not for you… but for them. And in this, may this also be said of you, too.

All it takes is one, will it be you?


One response »

  1. Trudy says:

    I’ve known Constantino for many years, and since I spoke Spanish (mas o menos) I can assure you that he was very funny, kind and trustworthy. For the last several years he has avoided us somewhat ( long story why) and I have missed him terribly. I knew that he couldn’t live forever, but it’s sad to know that I won’t run into him again one day. While he may have been alone there at the end, he had many, many friends. He was a sweetheart. For a time, in the winter of 97-98, he and his lifelong partner slept on our enclosed porch every night. We talked almost every night. The other, Eric, had a severe alcohol problem, but Tino took loving care of him til he died about 10 years ago. Yes, constantino was an amazing person, one of the best I’ve ever known.

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