Thursday, November 1, 2007


I only ever knew one person named Beatta.

She lived with her elderly father in a small city in South Dakota. He was a tough 90 year old gentleman who needed a walker, but still drove down the street to have coffee with his buddies. She was in her 50s, I think, and suffered from seizures.

They took care of each other.

"If I ever have to go to a nursing home, I hope I croak," her father told me once, in his characteristicly blunt style. Beatta herself was quiet. She had a low, thick voice, and sometimes would fall asleep in the recliner when I came to give them both communion.

As far as I knew, she never married, never had children. She lived with her father, did some cooking and kept the house clean. I don't know if I ever learned her hopes. It seems so long ago now, that I knew her. The thing I most remember is that her name was Beatta.


She didn't fit most of our definitions of "blessed": chronically ill, single, childless. But that is what her parents named her: Beatta. Perhaps they had hopes for her, their daughter, when she was born. Perhaps they imagined what she would be and do. Or perhaps (and this is far more likely) they simply felt blessed themselves to have a daughter: Beatta.

She took care of her father, and he took care of her.

And she was blessed, because her parents called her blessed, and because Jesus called her blessed. A saint of God, holy and beloved, but her glory hidden from our view in this life.

Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.


Grace thing said...

Thanks, Diane. Blessed indeed. I am touched and humbled by that remembrance.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Beatta is a beautiful name.

She took care of her father, and he took care of her.

They blessed each other.

FranIAm said...

That is so beautiful. I was wondering yesterday why I don't hear more preaching about the Beatitudes on a day like All Saints, when it is read.

Now I did. Bless you.

more cows than people said...


thank you.

Rowan The Dog said...

I wonder if most glory isn't like that, like an iceberg. On the surface we can see a little glory, maybe just a name. But, underneath...

I feel blessed that you shared this.


Gartenfische said...

I like this story a lot. It's REAL.