I suppose that when Kelly Gunderson put “God’s Gift” as the title of this video she was referring to the very special moment when her Grandmother remembered who she was, expressing how much she loved her. It was indeed a gift that is rare in the life of a family struggling with the illness of Alzheimer’s.
Still, I would say that the gift came, not only from God, but also from Kelly. It is Kelly’s love that reminds me of God’s love. When many are excluding inconvenient members of their families from their lives, Kelly stays close. We all know the horrors of Alzheimer’s: as it progresses our loved ones slip further and further way. The world’s logic is to let them slip. “Abandon them; they won’t remember it anyway.”
There’s no lack of logic in the argument if positivistic egoism is logical. But we must ask ourselves how convinced we are of another type of logic, a more human logic, one illuminated by the light of the Gospel.
He Will Never Stop Loving Us
How often does God draw close to us, reveal his unspeakable tenderness towards us and then we too forget? What if for that reason he stopped loving us? Are we not called to love, no matter the response we get? An apostle who isn’t willing to give without any sign of immediate fruit is destined to failure. A little crazy perhaps, but moments like these remind us what it is all about: there is no reason not to love. Absolutely no act of love will go forgotten, not one tear will be wasted, not one minute squandered. Love is always worth it. Love is eternal. Love is to be celebrated, whether it be here in this life, like we see in Kelly’s case, or the next. Love will never be forgotten.
A Prayer for those Suffering with Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
Defend the lowly and fatherless;
render justice to the afflicted and needy.
Rescue the lowly and poor;
deliver them from the hand of the wicked.
Loving God, Healer and Comforter,
we pray for those who suffer from the anxiety, ambiguity and confusion of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Look with mercy upon their distress, confusion or isolation. Shelter them where dignity and peace abound. Grant them understanding helpers and the willingness to accept help. In the face of loss of memory and control, increase their confidence in your love and strengthen their care-givers. As the Good Shepherd, tend to the sick, rest the weary, pity the afflicted, soothe the suffering and bless the dying. We make this supplication through the intercession of Our Lady of Lourdes, in the name of your Son, Jesus and the Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.
(This beautiful prayer was written and published by the Catholic Health Association)