Monday, October 22, 2007

When good men of God die young

The other day I learned of the death of a friend and colleague, Fr. Bill Wiseman. He was a former state legislator who faithfully served in the Episcopal Church, at Church of the Holy Cross and was a good man of God who always, from my experience, tried to open hearts and minds to a deeper embrace of faith. I knew him from my time at Phillips Theological Seminary, where I enjoyed his presence in several classes. When we were in our Ethics course together he always pressed me to dig a little deeper on my convictions and my understandings of things, which was something he was willing to do, also. He was a strength to others who sought to give their life's vocation to Christian ministry, as was evidenced by his invitation to speak at my friend Josh's ordination.

Last Wednesday, Father Wiseman died in a plane crash. He was piloting the plane, which was also carrying a parishioner and her three teenage children, who also all died.

It's disheartening to see a good man of God die young, as well as it is to see the tragedy of losing a mother and her children. So what can we do when good men of God die young? Where do we turn? Only to our knees.

God, thank you for the experiences you've given us through the gift of a good man of God.
We regret that he joined you so soon, but we rejoice in knowing that he is united with you.
Extend your compassionate and loving embrace to the Wiseman family, the Lunn family, and the Church of the Holy Cross. And may their memories live on in the depths of our souls.

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