On Grief (John Wilhelm Rowntree)

This seems appropriate given the events of today involving a friend and Fuller prof. of mine.

Quaker John Wilhelm Rowntree wrote in 1905:

Every [one] knows in [their] heart that there is no greater thing in the world than pure unselfish love. Death cannot conquer, nay he teaches ever that love is supreme. Good [people] do not die. Their lives are as the tearing of the veil, they show us something of that which is eternal, for if here love is greatest in the heart of [humankind], must it not be greatest in God himself? And if greatest in himself, then let the mystery of his will be never so dark, we may gird ourselves each to his life’s work with something more than courage. Love bridges death. We are comrades of those who are gone; though death separate us, their work, their fortitude, their love shall be ours, and we will adventure with hope, and in the spirit and strength of our great comrade of Galilee, who was acquainted with grief and knew the shadows of Gethsemane, to fight the good fight of faith.

Published by Wess Daniels

Teacher, author, Quaker, ​and public theologian. Director of Friends Center and Quaker Studies at Guilford College.

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