Dear Dr. Laura,
Recently I had the sad task of walking with a family as they buried their infant daughter after many months of preparation and anticipation. This child was a "miracle child" conceived by a couple after their other children had reached adulthood.
How painful this has been for all of them. But in the midst of their pain and grief, I also observed a powerful moment of love and service.
When the service at the graveside was over, the father carried the tiny casket to the grave and placed it in the ground. The mother and other members of the family gathered around and placed roses on the casket. And then we all watched as the two adult brothers of the tiny infant took the shovels from the cemetery workers and gently and lovingly placed the dirt over the casket, filling the grave in the only act that would do for their sister.
As the family was leaving the gravesite, I spoke once again to each of them. As the two brothers shook my hand I said to them what they did was beautiful and it must have been very difficult. One of the brothers, an active duty Marine, turned to me and said, "It was the right thing to do."
How many times we, your listeners, hear you tell us to go and do the right thing. That day I saw how it is truly done quietly and without fanfare. I am not surprised it would take a Marine to remind me that all of us are supposed to do the right thing, no matter how difficult it may be for us personally.
I know our country is much better because this young man has chosen to serve in the Marines. I want to take a moment to thank him and so many other men and women who have chosen to do the right thing in their lives and who can teach us all what it means to do the right thing.
Thank you for reminding us every day we must look for the right thing to do, regardless of the cost to us personally. Only then can we live with integrity and make a difference in our world.
Fr. Stan De Boe