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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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'The world is not the same'

We’d just buried Phyllis’ father. The death had not been sudden. He’d been an elderly gentleman, failing for a while, then dying neither in pain nor in disgrace.

Nor had Phyllis broken into tears during the funeral service, nor at the interment, nor standing alone as the casket was lowered with petals into its vault. In fact she had been, as they say, a brick throughout the whole ordeal—washing, wiping, shaving her father and cutting his toenails while he hissed objections. At the graveside her skirt whipped her legs.
fish in a bowl
I asked whether I could drive her home. She nodded and took my arm.


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December issue

DECEMBER issue:

Advent: Waiting together

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