The Chapel of the Oaks

A rose on the grounds at the Chapel of the Oaks

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Youngest son wanted to take a summer drive. We stopped by the local fast food for a ‘buck ice tea’ and away we flew. Driving up hills that ascended into our imagination as the trail turned our minds.  The Yucca plants were standing tall, hidden within the snake turns of the mountains. Familiar objects of man and earth passed us by. The road driven as a waterfall that flowed onto Topanaga Canyon Boulevard. Then something winked in my heart to the right of the canyon at Lassen and Valley Circle. The Chapel of the Oaks.

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A bright day at the Chapel

It was bright today. The roses outside, and the stain glass windows inside the Chapel, were radiant. It was positively illuminated. Only one man was in the chapel as we sat down to be humbled to silence.

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A bright place .. no more darkness…

We talked a bit. The man had just come from Portland Oregon to attend a service for his last Uncle. Son’s eyes lit up. He has been inspiring me with the idea of going to Portland to view some steam engine trains this summer. I listened as I viewed the light and felt the ambiance of the beautiful chapel.

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The Chapel has several stain glass windows of oak trees.

Was it five years ago that my mother lie in a pine box before me? Then my memory of this place was a dark cold coffin where my focus was drawn to her, only her. Mother was a very independent lady. She was stubborn and self sufficient and kept to herself. She was dedicated to her children and codependent to her husband.

Today this gloom and grief lifted. I did not notice anything in the chapel before at mother’s funeral. Today, this chapel transformed into a wonderful archetype of death, transformation and rebirth. Son was so sweet and kind to me today. Very wise in his ways. My mother’s image, held in my mind and heart now, is happy, bright and brilliantly free. With closure new doors open.

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