By Johnnie C. Godwin
Contributing columnist, B&R
Editor’s note: The following column is Part I of a two-part series. Although Part I is the joint effort of Allan Legard and Johnnie Godwin, it is mostly Godwin’s writing. In Part II, Legard will identify 10 essential next steps when a loved one dies.
Ideally, all loved ones would die like Abraham; and families would celebrate their lives despite the grief of the parting. Abraham lived to be 175 years old. Then, the Bible says, “He took his last breath and died at a good old age, old and contented, he was gathered to his people” (Genesis 25:7-8, CSB).
But in reality, circumstances vary so much that many of us hardly know what to do first and following the death of a loved one. That is true in times of pandemic but also for families in all eras of life.
Friend Allan LeGard and I put our hearts and experience together for this column to suggest what we hope will be helpful to you when a loved one dies.
What we write is just the tip of the iceberg, but there is voluminous literature on dealing with death, grief, and next steps after loved ones die.
Still, we may be helpful with a few suggestions for the living before they die and for family when death comes. [Read more…]