Sometimes I am asked how those of us who offer bereavement care cope with all the sadness we encounter, and the short answer is we just do! I recognise the need to be the one who knows what is going on and whilst involved and concerned about the bereaved I also need a measure of detachment in order, to a certain extent, to facilitate and free up the grieving process for those left behind.
But it doesn't stop me feeling sad about losing folk. In the past few weeks we have had a sudden death, a relatively young death and today the death of an older (but not very old) man who was a real stalwart of the church in the village where he lived. We have had other deaths in the villages, and i have mentioned the number of funerals in every post recently, but some feel, as it were, more 'natural', whilst others I have felt quite affected by.
The loss of this very active, very committed church member today is one of those. I knew this person well, I was very fond of him - he was a genuinely good man, not a saint (and he wouldn't thank me for making him out to be so) but a good man! I will miss him.
Sometimes being a Vicar makes me sad.