Write Again … ‘For whom the bell tolls’

Published 12:06 am Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Let me try to tell you this story, kind reader, as it was told to me.

It would seem prudent that I not use the names of those involved, nor specifically identify where it took place.

The young man, in the course of interacting with and treating the client — a little girl well under 10 years of age — came to know the mother and the child’s siblings quite well.

The mother was a single parent, and the young man was working his way back from a failed marriage.

That, at some point, the two adults should develop affections for each other isn’t really surprising. Their relationship grew stronger.

The little girl, who struggled with serious health challenges, grew more ill. And then she died. Words can’t really express the grief her family experienced.

Then, after a reasonable and respectable amount of time had passed, the mother and the young man realized their love for each other was surely strong enough for them to become man and wife.

The wedding took place on a lovely evening in a small rural church next door to where the mother and her children lived.

It was by design that the service was held on the child’s birthday. This little girl, who was the reason for her mother meeting the man who was to become her husband, most surely would have been pleased that this union came to pass.

After the service and a pleasant reception held at the church was over and the wedding guests had departed, the fellowship and kitchen areas were put back in order. The building was left dark and secured.

Then … just before bedtime, the church bell rang. It tolled the exact number of years that corresponded to how old the child would have been on that very day.

A quick walk over to the church revealed nothing. The building was locked. All the lights were still out. No one was in or even near the building.

So here the story ends.

This couple no longer lives in these parts. Their marriage continues strong. Their love endures.

I am reminded of some of the lyrics from “The Wedding Song.”

“He is now to be among you, at the calling of your hearts. Rest assured this troubadour is active on your parts.

“The union of your spirits here has caused him to remain. For whenever two or more of you are gathered in his name —

“There is love …”