Proclaiming the Good News of God in Christ

All Saints’ Day Reflection & DioNE Necrology

I Sing a Song of the Saints of God...

I Sing a Song of the Saints of God…

When we think of All Saints’ Day we often remember those who spread the Word of God, and died for their beliefs; those martyred saints for whom many of our churches are named. Sometimes we think about those whose goodness showed in all their lives, such as Mother Theresa. But I think of another group of people. When I was in college, our chapel choir often sang an anthem by R. Vaughan Williams, “Let Us Now Praise Famous Men”. It speaks of who “all the saints” are. Below are the words and my understanding of who they are.


“Let us now praise famous men and our fathers that begat us” refers to our parents, grandparents, and other ancestors. Those people who brought us into the world, raised us, and taught us how to act and care.


“Such as did bear rule in their kingdoms men renowned for their power, leaders of the people by their counsel and by their knowledge” reminds us of our leaders, elected or not, who led us through our times of trial. These leaders include such as John F. Kennedy and Winston Churchill. But it also includes Hiram Kano, Corrie Ten Boom, Martin Luther King Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, and William Wilberforce who helped bring about changes to improve the lives of those people society ignored.


“Such as found out musical tunes and recited verses in writing” includes all the poets, composers, writers, scientists, and inventors who gave us a new way to look at the world and helped us understand those with whom we share the planet.


“All these were honoured in their generation and for the glory of our times,” points out those who were noticed and publically acclaimed during their times or in our history.


“But some there be which have no memorial who have perished as though they have never been” reminds me of the unknown soldiers, forgotten heroes of 9/11, war victims, runaways, the homeless, and others in desperate situations. It also reminds me of those, like my father, who did not want any graven record of himself. We may never have the names of these people, but they also are saints.


“Their bodies are buried in peace but their name liveth for evermore.” These are all the saints, in any category.


And to this list of the Saints, let us not forget to add those present saints referred to in Hymn 293, “I Sing a Song of the Saints of God.” Here we include those “who toiled and fought and lived and died for the Lord they loved and knew”; here we have as well doctors, queens, shepherdesses (farmers and ranchers), soldiers, priests (and deacons), martyrs, educators, and everyday folk.


When we stop to remember those who have passed away in the past year, let us also stop and remember all those who made our lives what they are and gave us the freedoms we enjoy.


– Kathy Graham




Diocese of Nebraska 2014 Necrology


ALLIANCE, St. Matthew’s

Eugene Kort Lewis

Robert Albon Hall

Berniece Bates

Madeline Jane Bowhay


BEATRICE, Christ Church

Verna Smith


BELLEVUE, Holy Spirit

Ralph “Bud” Oltman

Louise Hamilton

Amelia Westman

David Nutting

Shirley Commings


BROKEN BOW, St. John’s

Wanda Weatherly

George Ashenfelter

Lane Brabham


COLUMBUS, Grace Church

Roberta Lakey

David Forsberg


ELKHORN, St. Augustine

Sally Farnham


FREMONT, St. James

DeLoris McGee

Sarah “Sally” Wengert

Boyd Hammond


HYANNIS, Calvary Church

Maxine Applegarth

Frances Janet Davis


KEARNEY, St. Luke’s

Jean Sall

Roger Hanson

Priscilla Ring

Elizabeth King

Harold McClure


LEXINGTON, St. Peter’s

Audra Jean Sands


LINCOLN, St. Mark’s on the Campus

Ferd Anderson


LINCOLN, St. Matthew’s

Dawson Cox

Brad Loyd Braddeley

Patty Jo Hohenstein

Helen Rokeby

George Russell

Russell C. Inbody



Marialyse Knobel

Hideo Kamino

Bud Johnson

Ruth Matsutani

George Layton

Susie Kudlacek


OMAHA, All Saints

Patricia Ann Bauerle

Shirley J. Randall

Carroll E. Fredrickson

Barbara J. Harmon

Muriel K. Young “Miv”

Marilynn Adair Hetzler

Robert Emmett Scherrer

E. Newton Kelley “Newt”

Thomas Rudyard Kipling

Elizabeth Ann Finn

Maybelle E. McMaken

Drexel John Sibbernsen, Jr.

Larry Dean Rankin

Linda Buthman Bedwell


OMAHA, St. Andrew’s

Fr. Bill Smythe

Clayton Witherspoon

George Lee


OMAHA, Trinity Cathedral

Charlotte Egger

George “Woody” Thelin, II

Evelyn Reimer

Gloria Dunbar

Thelma Nelsen

Danforth Loving

Beatrice McLaughlin

Kara Shainholtz

Helen Weber


SIDNEY, Christ Church

Betty Andrews


WYMORE, St. Luke’s

Edna L. Closs

Margaret A. Thomas


Priests Deceased Since Last Council

The Rev. Skip Miles

The Rev. Scott Rathman

The Rev. Howard Schoech

The Rev. William Smythe


Deacons Deceased Since Last Council

The Rev. Betty Andrews

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