Read at the Onset of the Grand Celebration
For the Gathering of the Family Reunion of 2018
by Timothy Stathis
If Life were but a dream
And we could imagine into reality
in an instant, our greatest wishes
Then what more could one, or the many here
have dreamed, have imagined greater than this:
such a gathering of love and affection,
spread among this sprawling family
connecting us all.
If fact, it is hard to imagine this reality,
that all life herein, from the life now aborning in the womb of Zoe,
to the eldest of the ten offspring, Kostaki,
that all here have come forth from
or are tied herein, by blood or bond,
to the woman once young, once a child herself,
frolicking in innocence, ambivalent of her childhood poverty,
who herself then could never have imagined this…
she, one of four daughters of humble Greek Immigrants,
emerging in identity in the container of Syracuse, New York;
now 92 years-old, the Matriarch of this magnificent Family,
the Mother of 10, Grandmother of over twice that many,
Great-Grandmother of all the littlest among us….
that from one womb, and because of the parental devotion of her beloved husband,
this reality is now, is present, is abounding
in this day’s sense of loving belonging…. to one another.
We take a pause too, in this moment of celebration,
to remember those likewise so connected to us all,
who once walked, laughed, cried, and otherwise lived among us,
now gone from the screen of life, passed to the mysteries beyond.
We honor their memory and honor our sense
of their eternal connection yet among us,
even connected to our beating hearts in this very moment.
We visualize too, those yet living,
those also who should be here, would be here,
but could not be here, and enfold them too
in our sense of family joy today.
Let the afternoon unfold is this joy,
and let the years ahead be as rays connecting each individual life here
to the intensity of this incredible radiance of God’s splendor experienced today.