One year ago today, I lost a dear friend.
It’s funny how time works. In those first days and weeks after her death, it was so hard to believe she was really gone. Her presence in my life, even when we weren’t speaking, was just one of those things I took for granted. She was always going to be there.
Until, one day, she wasn’t.
But as the months passed, I adjusted to this new reality. And there came a point where it was no longer shocking. It was normal, her absence.
It has to be that way, I think, or else we could never move on with our lives. We would be perpetual prisoners of grief.
There’s an ache that may never heal fully. I don’t know what I would do without my faith to cling to. This year I’ve found myself clinging to it like never before.
Pope Benedict once wrote that the question of justice is the strongest argument in favor of eternal life. The injustice of history, he said, cannot be the final word. There must be an ultimate reckoning.
For a long time after her death, I wondered what had happened to her. Was she in heaven? Had she just ceased to exist? Would I ever see her again?
But now I feel certain: we will.
Because I believe in a God of ultimate justice.
Because I believe in a world where wrong is ultimately punished, and good is ultimately vindicated.
Because if they had killed her, or driven her to her death, and that had been it, it would mean that death is more powerful than love, and evil more powerful than God.
And it’s not.
So today, I remember.
But I do more than remember.
I wait in hope.