Write Again . . . “Then you visited me”

Published 4:57 pm Monday, January 11, 2016

For many, many years it has been a real privilege for me to be a part of singing groups that regularly entertain the residents of retirement, assisted living and nursing homes.

The Greenville “Carolina Chord Connection,” a barbershop harmony chorus, visits such homes frequently, and especially during holiday seasons. Then too, Sally and I are a part of a small group from our church who have a monthly ministry at one of our nursing homes here in town.

To say that being a part of such endeavors is a real blessing is, in truth, an understatement. We can only hope that the residents experience even a small bit of the blessings we receive from sharing, even if for only a little while, our gifts and talents and love with them. Truly.

It has long been a belief I hold that everyone should visit one or more of these institutions — homes for them — at least a few times a year.

There is much to be learned from such visits. The main point most take away from such visits is just how blessed we who are able to continue our lives — our living — in our own homes really are.

In a nursing home, particularly one that provides multiple levels of skill care, you will see, sense, how some are so dependent on others for just their basic needs being met. There are sights, sounds, and yes, smells. You know.

Some people do not want to visit in nursing homes, and do so obligatorily or not at all. I have also been in singing groups with one or two members who very much did not want to make such visits. So it goes.

Let me end this week’s scribblings with a bit of humor. A true story.

You see, Sal was a resident of what was the Beaufort County Nursing Home. That facility is no longer in use.

Very near to Christmas one year she was delighted when her pastor, the Rev. Robert Morris, walked into her room. Sal was a staunch Presbyterian, and Robert was a much-liked leader of his flock, and in the community-at-large.

Robert had his guitar with him.

“Sal, would you like to hear a little music?” he asked.

“Yes,” she replied. “But Robert, if I have to listen to another damn Christmas carol I think I will scream!”

Let me close with this, friends. Visit someone in one of these homes. Someone you may know, or simply anyone.

Because, as you and I know, “There but for the grace of God . . .”