Friday, April 07, 2006
I met Ken a little over a year ago. He, and his family attended the "Teen Life" services at the church where I play. I am sorta new to that church communnunity. I don't belong to the church, but the guitar player in the band. He always came up after service to complement the band. I really didn't know him, but for a few minutes each week. He was so nice. Late, last fall, one day the song, "For I am Weak" (See previous post) came to me and I scribbled it down, and broke out the recorder, and hastily recorded the song accapella, in four parts. I only did single takes on all the parts, for I was so excited over the song development, that I just wanted to hear it! It had a few sour notes , but I kept saying to myself, "Its only a denmo, I'll re-work it later" I brought the song in to church the next day and played it for Al, the music director at the church, and my best friend. It was that day, I made some remark about Ken. Al turned on the most somber look, and said "You know, he's dying. He has cancer, and has a short time to live; we don't know how long." I saw the priest giving Ken a blessing after the service. I walked over and handed the CD I just made the day before, and said,"Here, you might enjoy this." Every week afterward, he would come up and say "I love the song; I listen to it over and over." After a few weeks, I did not see him at church. His wife came up to me, and said" He cant make it this week. He's home listening to your song now." She said the same thing about three weeks in a row. Then he died. It was then that I found out how special he was. You see, I was not a church member, so to speak, and did not know all that much about the church. My church, and their sister church combined organizations for economic reasons, using one Priest for the two Parishes, and so forth. Ken and his family actually belonged to the sister church. They were coming to our services to prove a point to the rest of his congregation. It seems that a great many of them were upset about the two churches combining. They were used to going to their own church in their own neighborhood (even though the two churches were probably within a couple miles of one another) and were put out to have to go to the other church if they preferred a service at a certain time and day. Ken was paving the way, breaking down barriers, making a point in a very personal way. He asked our band to play at his funeral service, and picked all the songs himself (many of them jubilant rockers) And once more, his funeral service was held at our church, not his! He made the biggest statement at the end. His wife came to Al one day recently, and said "Ken left some insurance funds, and asked me to find out what the church could use." Al's eyes were filled with tears and lit up all at once as he told me "Ken's buying two projectors for our song lyrics to be projected on the ceiling and do away with the printed sheets we hand out." His wife, Lorrie, now sings in our band, and Ken's memory is alive always. I have never met a person so faithful, so prayerful, so totally immersed in the Holy Spirit. He never broke down, or spoke in negative tones regarding his plight. He always smiled to the end and said "I'm blessed" I am so fortunate and blessed myself to have met Ken, and he will be in my heart forever.