Text Illustrations
Tony Campolo relates the time his mother called him and told him that Mrs. Kilpatrick had died. He said, this dear woman, Mrs. Kilpatrick, had lived on his street in W. Philly as he was growing up. She had taken him to museums, concerts, social functions. So, Tony’s mom called and said, "Now, Tony the least you can do to show your respect for Mrs. Kilpatrick is to go to her funeral." Now, Campolo, in his 60’s, says, "If your Italian and your mother tells you to do something, you do it, no matter how old you are." So, he went but he got there a little late. He said, "I rushed in and sat down, looked around and realized that I was the only one there except for this one elderly lady." Then he said, "I looked over the edge of the casket and I could tell that the MAN laying there was not Mrs. Kilpatrick." And he realized he was in the wrong room! And he was about to get up when this elderly lady grabbed his arm, looked at him with tear filled eyes and said, "You were his friend weren’t you?" Campolo asks, "What would you do? Would you say, No, I’m in the wrong room, I didn’t know your husband but by the looks of things nobody else did either?" "No," Campolo said, "I did the same thing you’d do, I lied. I said, Yes, he was quite a man wasn’t he?" Campolo says, "I sat through the whole funeral and since I was the only one there I went to the cemetery too." On the way back Campolo said, "Mrs. King, I have to be honest with you. I didn’t know your husband. I came to the funeral by mistake." But instead of being angry, she squeezed his hand and said slowly, "You’ll never ever, ever know, how much your being with me today meant to me." We all need someone to be with us on occasion. Maybe not quite that desperate but we all need emotional support at times. We all need someone to be with us on occasion. Maybe not quite that desperate but we all need emotional support at times. Somebody we can talk to, somebody that will hold us up in difficult times.