Eulogy and Memorial Masses for Michael Mckain

Brothers, per our Supreme by-laws, when a brother dies, we must hold 5 masses in their honor. In addition, we must hold a mass in the honor of all our deceased brothers (generally in November). There is a small cost involved ($10 per mass), which the council will absorb. The dates are scheduled as thus (all Saturday masses):

For Mike Mckain:
Feb. 5 @ 5pm
March 26 @5pm
May 7 @ 5pm
June 11 @ 5pm
July 23 @ 5pm

For the Knights of Columbus:
Nov. 5 @ 5pm

Begin Eulogy (spoken by Past Grand Knight Sam Balboa):

Thank you for coming to celebrate Michael’s life and his going home to God.  Since Michael was a special friend to so many, I was honored when his wife Patricia invited me to give a short eulogy.  As we shared stories, Patricia recalled how Mike and Sister Mariam, a past principal of Holy Cross School, and Patricia’s cousin, would banter about who of the two would be the first to arrive in heaven.  They would end their visit by asking the other to promise that whoever arrived first would help prepare a place for the other.

Mike did not live to be an old man, but with his eye on heaven, he led a very full and fulfilling life here on earth. What fulfilled him were his relationships with family, his friends and God.  He was a lighthearted man who did not take himself too seriously. [He was always more concerned about the needs of others rather than his own.]  No one remained sad in his presence.  He would cajole them into a happier frame of mind.

He spoke openly about the need to honor one’s father and mother and gave a great deal of time and assistance to his parents.  Because of that, they were able to remain at home well into old age.

Everyone who knew Mike heard about his wife and two children, Owen and Julia and how proud he was of them.  The very close bond he shared with Owen was the type that is all too rare between fathers and sons.  His daughter Julia was his princess and the joy of his life, and he was bursting with pride last June at her high school graduation.

Mike and Patricia’s relationship was one of love, and deep appreciation and respect for the other.  He surprised Patricia with flowers even on unexpected occasions and enjoyed searching for gifts that would be particularly pleasing to her –frequently asking her friends, and relatives for ideas.

Mike was a true believer.  His faith in God and his devotion to the Catholic Church and the sacraments were the core of his life.  And there is no doubt that he loved his neighbor as himself.

Mike’s smile and wit, his kindness and sensitivity to everyone he met through work, at church, at the Knights of Columbus and the Boy Scouts led to many friendships.

Mike always got involved.  He was an usher at the Saturday evening Mass here at St. Elizabeth’s.  As a devoted member of the Knights of Columbus, first with the Rock Creek Council and later with the St. Elizabeth’s Council, he was usually among the first to volunteer to help.  While he declined  formal leadership positions, I can assure you from personal experience that his involvement and willingness to work were second to none.

Mike and I were very actively involved with the Boy Scouts while our sons were growing up. I cannot recall too many camping trips that he and Owen ever missed.  And it was a very proud day for his dad when Owen became an Eagle Scout.

Since his stroke in July when his death seemed imminent his life was difficult–to say the least.  However, his family thanks God for the additional time he was given.  With his family’s constant presence and support, Mike remained his caring self.  He struggled to communicate verbally and when those attempts failed, he simply smiled.  To the end, he expressed appreciation for all the little things his caregivers did for him.

Mike, it’s our turn now to thank you– for all your caring and the joy you brought into our lives.  And your friend, Sister Mariam did go first—several years ago.  So by the grace of God and with prayers from Sister Mariam, we can be certain that a place has been waiting for Mike.

End Eulogy

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