In Memoriam of + Alvera Bitter +
Delivered By
Pr. Mark D. Lovett
Delivered On
February 25, 2017
Central Passage
John 14:1-6

In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit

The Lord has gone to prepare a place for His disciples, for His Church, His people. And He is coming again to take us to Himself.

In the meantime, we travel along the Way. And that Way is Christ who was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, died and was buried and on the third day rose again from the dead to open for us the way of everlasting life.

How does one travel, though? It is easy to dismiss such language as poetic prose or allegory, to say that we travel the Way, and that Way is Christ. But it is no mere allegory. Christ is the Way. He is the Way to Paradise, to Heaven. He is the way to eternal life. In fact, He is the Life as much as He is the Way to Life.

He is the Way to the Father. And that is where we want to be; in our Father’s house.

So to get there, we travel along the Way. We listen to Him of whom the Father said, “This is my beloved Son, listen to Him.” We hear His voice calling us to the still waters of Holy Baptism and the abundant feast of His most holy body and blood, given and shed for you. We hear His voice say, “You are forgiven,” and “Peace be with you.” Words that come into sharp focus when we consider such things as death and mortality.

A loving father tucks his children in at night and says, “Good-night. I love you. I’ll see you in the morning.” And the little one confidently closes his eyes and fall fast to sleep having heard the promise of his father, the comforting words that speak peace – I love you and I’ll see you in the morning. So it is with our Christ. He says to us as we lay down to sleep the sleep of death, “I love you. I’ll see you in the morning.” And we are always laying down to sleep the sleep of death for it is appointed once for a man to die and such is the way of all flesh. Therefore, since we are always on our way to death we must always hear His words of life, of peace, of love, of comfort: Don’t be afraid, I’ll see you in the morning.

And so He shall. For He Himself is the Bright and Morning Star that will rise and shine on us. He is our protector and defender even when our life has departed and our body lies here waiting for our Christ, our Great Redeemer, to wake us from our sleep and return our life to our body so that what is mortal puts on immortality and what was perishable becomes imperishable, and we become like He is, alive forevermore.

And then He shall take us to the Father. That is where we are going along the Way that is Christ. That is why He must be for us the Life, for no mortal man can look upon the Father and live. That is why He must be for us the Truth, for there is no falsehood in the Father.

And when we close our eyes that final day and the breath leaves our mortal body for the last time, and we join our sister here and all those who have fallen asleep in Christ, who is the repose of the blessed dead, we, too, will be confident in our Lord’s words: I love you. I’ll see you in the morning. Peace be with you.

+ In Nomine Iesu +