Thursday, March 7, 2013

Day 5 - Faithful is He That Called You ...

Before we came back home to Bangalore I had mused to myself, Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could have a small reception to honour Dad for the 54th anniversary of his joining Berean? We could have the faculty and staff to lunch ...

Sarah and Mera, wives to my brothers Ed and Joh, graciously switched their menu plans up and encouraged me to go for it. "Maybe you could make small invitation cards?" Mera suggested.

When I conceived this plan, it was my intention to sneak out of the conference morning sessions in order to work on the party.

It turned out that I played the piano for every service; the heavy lifting went by default to Deborah, BA and Raj, with able assists from Aren, Mera and all the Ladybugs.

We left the college campus at 6 a.m. on the 5th, chasing across the city to the flower market for one brief hour of unparalleled beauty. Deb knew what we needed: Dad used to buy Mum flowers almost every weekend - roses, glads, tuberoses with their stocky stalks upon which balance delicate flowers that emit indescribably heady perfume not quite jasmine or queen of the night but a flower whose scent weaves tendrils into your subconscious and wraps itself delicately around your heart. And while tuberoses pervade your heart, your capacity for whimsical beauty grows exponentially.

Tuberoses had pervaded Mum's heart, and Mum had pervaded Dad's heart; Mum got her tuberoses almost every Saturday when they lived in India! She would arrange great vases for Church on Sunday with whatever flowers he brought her; and then on Sunday night, when the last person had left the auditorium, she would take the blooms back up to our home and the perfume would reside there through the week, a silent bene dictum to the beauty God provides in even the most trying circumstance.

More pictures from the market another day -
but Raj started our day by bringing us tea
from a chai wallah as we prepared to go home
after a whirlwind hour with flowers.
The story of the happy time we all had that afternoon together is best told in pictures. But as we crowded into the little lobby that had been promoted to an atrium for the day, the presence of God was in the place and the faithfulness of God, to Dad and to all of us, was attested to in word and in deed.

Gathering up vases for the flowers

"I did it how Mum taught me,"
she said when complimented
on her arrangements

Mountains of egg salad sandwiches!

Aren, Raj's wife and true partner,
getting it all arranged on the tables

Becca helping Auntie Deb
pour fruit punch

Faithess (combination of Faith and Princess!)
 volunteering to serve

Ready to start!
My brother Ed opened the afternoon with a
prayer for God's blessing

Jeremiah, a student of both Mum and Dad and
now the Academic Dean, gave tribute to the
ways Dad was and remains faithful
to his call

I said a few words on behalf of the family

We sang one of Dad's favourite
choruses,  'Faithful One,'
then Rev McIlveen thanked God for
Dad, for the time we were sharing,
for the food we were about to enjoy 

Ladies first ...

(Who says that can't be done in India?!)

Jello in orange, white, green -
the colours of the Indian flag ...
The cake - from Fatima Bakery, of course!

Another giant of a man, faithful
in the little things as well as
the large. Thank you, Derek.

"Ladies who lunch" -
Mera, Beneth, Sarah

Dad and Dr Bob

With two of his men, who are now
teaching at the College - Babu and Jeremiah

BA has already done so much in looking
out for Dad on this trip ...

Thank you, Divakar, for getting a Conference
theme banner done for me, with the
changes I requested. A keepsake of this week.

Faithful One, so unchanging
Ageless One, You're my rock of peace
Lord of all, I depend on You
I cry out to You again and again.
You are my rock in time of trouble
You lift me up when I fall down
All through the storm Your love is the anchor -
My hope is in You alone.


  1. Perfect comment, Haupi! Well done, good and faithful servants ... enter into joy! What a lovely celebration with the invisible scent reflected in visible, colourful beauty - just as Dad's spirit shines through his life.

  2. Beautiful as always! So fun to share in your time there! I am not surprised you pulled off a first class luncheon with your sisters!! How very special for you all, and what a tribune to your Dad. I am sure you have many emotions with the flowers and all! Hugs!

  3. So sweet, all of you, all that you are enjoying together. Glad you are having a great time!


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