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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

22 July 2015: Tom Cooper, St Mary's Church, Buriton

David Bee

The recent sudden and unexpected death of our dearly loved Reader, David Bee, has hit us all hard at Buriton. We particularly feel for the devastating loss suffered by Judith and the family. At times like these the church family, and the whole community that David served so magnificently, is tested. How can we respond to this yawning gap in our lives?

The community meant a great deal to David. A natural communicator, he was known to one and all. This wasn't just sociability - the community was central to David's faith. His sermons preaching the love of God and of our neighbour will be long remembered by all who heard them.

However, David didn't just talk about these things - he lived them. In his love of life David embraced with a characteristic enthusiasm and energy all the good things - food and wine, music, cycling: the list of his interests seemed endless. In all his actions one sensed a huge upwelling of joy - joy that derived from his faith and which had to be expressed.

As a vet, he expressed his love of neighbour in practical terms, most notably in his regular travels to the harsh environments of Mongolia and Somalia. There his care of animals was an essential gift to those he met. Few of us are given the opportunity to act so selflessly for the good of the wider community - but one of the many memorable things about David was that he grasped his opportunities with both hands.

The positive things that David achieved are an inspiration to us all, whether or not we are fortunate enough to have his abilities and his strength of faith. As Christians, we pray for the grace to follow Jesus' example as David did in his outpouring of love for God and our neighbour.


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