With my byline appearing under the headlines of more than three hundred homicides I have had been assigned to cover for a western Wayne County newspaper in the great state of Michigan – and with an uncountable number of church services I have attended for departed friends and loved ones – I believe I can attest to the rude and cruel behavior of this obscene, inhumane, dark, vile, voiceless, vandal called Death.
This omnipresent creature that preys and craves all living things, appears suddenly, without invitation, then indiscriminately proceeds to destroy lives of everything it touches. Death cares not if the harvest is from the wise or the wicked, the powerful or the poor, the scholarly or the illiterate, the rich or poor – when it calls, it owns the scene; it has the final say.
Nations may stand in tribute for the fallen heroes or shout in joy when an evil tyrant falls. From ancient to modern times we have tomes of literature in praise and in awe of Death…but…oh, death can be so disruptive, so destruction to those who stand at the grave to mourn. Rest assured that time on the remarkable station called earth has no warranties or guarantees.
Years ago, during the reign of Josef Stalin and the Soviet Empire, I unwittingly wrote my own death warrant in the form of a petition to the Ambassador to the United States Embassy in Moscow. At the time I did not know that it was a fatal mistake for a citizen of the USSR to contact a foreign embassy; the belief that it belittled the Soviet regime, therefore a crime under Soviet law. I paid the consequences, but survived. A wise and older woman who always had her Bible at her side (also a crime under Soviet law) cleansed my wounds and helped me back to life, assured me daily during the healing process that my mission on earth was not over. “You still have much work to do,” she said. She renewed my faith in humanity, and also reminded me that, although we live among the atheists, the demons who are the messengers of the Devil…that our God is omnipresent and omnipotent. God defeated evil and the Devil and He will guide you home one day, she promised me.
She was among those who were taken away on that unforgettable night in 1949 when thousands were taken from their homes, tossed into trucks, driven to train stations, and transported to Siberia never to be seen or heard from again.
Evil – it is alive and lives in the hearts of many. It can be defeated.
Was not sinister Dorian Gray granted his wish by the Devil? And did not disillusioned Gray end his own life? After he was strangely enough given eternal life? And did not Mr. Daniel Webster beguile and dupe the Devil and save the day for the hard-luck New Hampshire farmer Jabez Stone? Mr. Webster’s arguments on behalf of his client, Stone, convinced Lucifer’s hand-picked jury that the farmer’s contract with the Devil should be tossed into the flames of Hell. His words saved the day and Stone’s soul. And reportedly the Devil never again showed his face in New Hampshire. (Of the latter I am not sure for some citizens of the Granite State reported that they saw the Damned One on stage during the recent presidential caucus.)
But would a man or woman seeking the highest office its people have to offer the use of profanity? Naw…
Unfortunately I must stop here. Death has intervened. My dear wife has just called my “dungeon” and informed me there is “breaking news” of national and international importance: Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has died and I must leave this page to get the updates. If news sources confirm the report, our sympathies go out to his wife, Maureen, and the family. Death is so disruptive…
See you next week.
Tom Mooradian was one of 151 Americans who traveled to Soviet Armenia to repatriate during the 1940’s. Thought to be a spy by the KGB, Tom miraculously survived 13 years behind the Iron Curtain winning the hearts of the Soviets through his basketball prowess. Filled with political drama, romance, and intrigue, Tom’s autobiography, The Repatriate reads like a novel, and will have you guessing how Tom managed to return to America alive.
The Second Edition is now available on Kindle and in Paperback!