Sunday, September 23, 2007

Answer me this

There is a cemetery on the way to our parish. I have noticed, aside from the usual flowers in various states of aliveness, that people have taken to putting glow in the dark crosses on their loved ones' graves. WHY IS THIS NECESSARY? I am truly perplexed as to the need for this. While I understand the wish to leave flowers, holy cards, letters, or other remembrances on a loved one's grave, my confusion on the glow in the dark crosses is two fold.

First, if the gravestone itself has a cross or other religious symbol on it, why the need to repeat it? This one, I actually can wrap my mind around. Anyone who has been to my house would be forgiven for wondering why I feel it is necessary to have yet another icon or statue of Our Lady when there are so many already there.

However, I truly don't get the glow in the dark part. Does one have a glow in the dark cross on a grave to show the deceased the way out? Or, perhaps it is to show the Lord the way in? Is it for the living who want to visit the grave in the middle of the night in the pitch dark?!?

I honestly don't know.


Toni said...

Could it be so someone could see the grave as they drive by in the dark? When I lived near the cemetery where my daughter is buried, I always used to look in that direction even though I was more likely to cause a wreck than see her headstone.

Just a thought.

Dymphna (4HisChurch) said...

That's logical, yeah.

ladycub said...

My MIL gave us a glow in the dark Crucifix. No she is not really into that sort of thing at all. Someone she knows had asked for one and she had to order several to get the one she needed (I think that's why anyway...maybe DH can correct me).
I don't get the glow in the dark thing as well but it's a crucifix and eventhough it's not our "cup of tea" we don't feel it's proper to just discard it. She gave one to each of her 6 kids. At the wedding we just went to we all talked about what we did with ours and knid of chuckled with each other about it.

Cygnus said...

I don't have so much of a problem with that as I do with In Memoriam stickers on the rear windows of vehicles. Does everyone need to know your grief? I lost one of my best friends 2 1/2 years ago, but I don't let everyone know about it all the time.

:o) said...

The whole thing of leaving flowers and stuff for the dead baffles me. What good does it do them? They don't need them anymore or is it just a guilt offering? Couldn't a donation be made for someone who needs something? I know most people don't think the way I do, but I just don't get it.

Dymphna (4HisChurch) said...

LC: Hmmm...well, maybe you can find an out of the way place to hang it where it won't freak you out in the middle of the night! I guess I can sort of see the idea of glow in the dark stuff around the house...more for the novelty of it than anything. But to put them on a grace just doesn't make sense to me.

Cyg: I've just started noticing those memorial things--I usually see them on the back of large SUV type vehicles, for some reason. I'm not sure they make social sense either, unless you are trying to call attention to an issue like cancer or drunk driving or something.

Dymphna (4HisChurch) said...

Yeah, a lot of people don't go in for leaving *anything* on a grave site, in the way of flowers or anything. I guess its just a way of remembering..more for the living as a way to do something tangible to show your love and remember your loved one. Like people leaving flowers in front of the Vietnam memorial.

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"Slavery ended in medieval Europe only because the church extended its sacraments to all slaves and then managed to impose a ban on the enslavement of Christians (and of Jews). Within the context of medieval Europe, that prohibition was effectively a rule of universal abolition. "— Rodney Stark

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