The following was spoken at the funeral of 2 homeless men. None who attended knew them, when I heard the words I thought how perfect, how poignant, how strong. They were buried with dignity.
“We never met you; never looked into your eyes, shook your hand, smiled, laughed or cried with you. We never knew you … but we know you,” Mr Gerhard said at the service.
“We know that you once laughed, dreamt, hoped and sought love. We know that you felt success and achievement, loss and failure. We know that you were hurt and that you probably hurt others on occasion as well.”
“You probably loved ice cream and hated vegetables. Enjoyed a beer or two, a chat, a good yarn and a joke.
“We hope that in your life you were loved by someone special to you. That you were held, shown off and boasted about by proud parents or grandparents. We hope that a wounded knee or heart was met with love, care, hugs and understanding. We hope that you found true love and were truly loved in return.
“Whatever the specifics of your lives which we do not know, we know you. You are us and we are you. Our humanity has bound us from time immemorial and will bind us forever more; in pain, in suffering, in hope, in love in truth and in life.”