Sunday, 11 March 2012

Celebrating the Life of Revd. Dr. Alan Megahey (1944-2011)

I have attended rather more funerals than I would have liked to have done.  Attending a Memorial Service this weekend was a very different experience.  I learnt of the untimely demise of my school chaplain last year, when he lost a battle to pancreatic cancer.  When I later became aware that a memorial service was to be organised by former colleagues from both my own rural alma mater, and other establishments his career had taken him to, I made a decision to try and attend. 

St. Marylebone Parish Church made for a superb venue and accommodated the many family, friends, former colleagues, and students who attended the extremely moving celebration of a remarkable man's life and work.  Standing amongst the congregation I realised I was amongst fellow beings whose lives had been touched by the same man to whom I wholly attribute my first spiritual awakening.  As such, whilst surrounded by strangers, I knew I was among friends.  

Members of the present school choir encouraged us to raise our voices, and sing with glad hearts, giving thanks that we had known a man of abundant compassion, seemingly infinite wisdom, great humour, impressive scholarship, and yet such humility.  He could easily have become a don at Selwyn College, Cambridge or a Bishop, but luckily for all present, Revd. Dr. Alan Megahey found his calling within education and there was a theme throughout the Tributes of his imparting so much to so many generations.  A life well lived but cut sadly short. 

"It is not length of life, but depth of life."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Yesterday is a memory, tomorrow is
a mystery and today is a gift,
which is why it is called the present.
What the caterpillar perceives is the end;
to the butterfly is just the beginning.
Everything that has a beginning has an ending.
Make your peace with that and all will be well."
Buddhist Saying

"As we grow up, we learn that even the one person that wasn't supposed to ever let us down, probably will.  You'll have your heart broken and you'll break others' hearts.  You'll fight with your best friend or maybe even fall in love with them, and you'll cry because time is flying by.  So take too many pictures, laugh too much, forgive freely, and love like you've never been hurt.  Life comes with no guarantees, no time outs, no second chances. you just have to live life to the fullest, tell someone what they mean to you and tell someone off, speak out, dance in the pouring rain, hold someone's hand, comfort a friend, fall asleep watching the sun come up, stay up late, be a flirt, and smile until your face hurts.  Don't be afraid to take chances or fall in love and most of all, live in the moment because every second you spend angry or upset is a second of happiness you can never get back."

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