it has been a very draining week for me with the big conference coming less than a month away for urban youth workers institute. i am crunching all the details for that event and other uywi coalitions going that need not to be forgotten about. in the midst of this chaos of work, life through a wrench my way. i would have to admit even though i have not been bloggin life had been great. i really have had very little to complain about. but about two weeks ago on a monday morning, my friend johnny texted me at 5 am in the morning! johnny is not someone who text me often... he just barely figured the whole thing out and usually just busts a phone call. so needless to say... he had my attention and than i read the text and it said a very shocking statement. "uncle ralphy was murdered last night". i was shocked stunned and felt a deep pain. i am sure that most of you who read this blog dont know uncle ralphy, but for those of us who knew and loved him. he was special. he was a centerpiece into the family that i had allowed me to be apart of for so many years. he treated me as a young punk high schooler as family when i was in his home. he made me laugh many times even when he made me the center of the joke.
it was a few days after the murder that johnny called and told me that the family wanted me to do the funeral. they wanted someone who knew and loved ralphy to do the funeral. i was scared (never did a funeral) and emotional as i was not sure if i could do it, but i knew that i had to do it. steve from gateway hooked me up with some notes that would help me create a very personalized service for ralphy. thank you steve once again you are there for me.
the service was held last monday and i was so nervous, but was so honored to be asked by the family. the day for me started around 6 am and ended at about 9 pm. the service went smooth, the mass following it was ok and the graveside time was the most emotional. i was truly thankful for the opportunity and for the kind words that ralphy's family had for what i shared in the morning. i will miss you ralphy, i know your neices, nephews, brother, your mother and your seven kids will miss you. i just hope we all can take the humor and joy u brought to us and spread it to those in the lives that god allows us to influence. i am thankful to call you a freind. rest in peace and see you on the other side.