Saturday, July 02, 2005

What's in a name?
The e-mail I opened today started out like so many others. It was an update from a woman I haven't seen or even spoken to for some time. She got married a few years ago -- I got an update at that time. She became pregnant with twins about nine months ago -- she updated me on that one too. I have been excited for her new life and have thought of her and prayed for her too. Then today, another e-mail. As I began to read it I realized what the contents would be: "Oh, yeah," I thought, "I'll bet the babies have arrived."

Sure enough they had. Two healthy, baby boys. She mentioned the first one's name and the grandfathers from whom the baby's name came. Then she mentioned the second baby's name and that the "Stephen" came from me, or was in my honor, or ... You know what I mean. She named the baby after me. I was stunned. I just sat there looking at the computer screen and read the sentence again. Something about the fact a baby was named after me, because of priestly ministry I had performed for this woman, well ... it really stopped me in my tracks (in a good way). I am so honored and so stunned. The woman recalled how I had helped her at a time when her life was in serious danger, perhaps even close to ending. And because of that, she wanted to name her baby after me. She had, of course, mentioned to me before how thankful she was for my support and ministry. But I guess the words of thanks sunk in in an entirely new way as I read today's e-mail.

It started out like so many other mundane e-mail updates, but has captivated my thoughts for the rest of the day. And beyond...

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