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  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

Memorial Service for Cindy - Feb. 16, 2019

A Celebration of Cindy Vrooman: February 16th, 2019 Welcome: by David Carlson

On behalf of the Vrooman family – our dear friends and companions on the road Dan, Katie and Justin, Claudia and Edith, Piper, Jason, Giovanni and Rosalyn the youngest grandchild... I’d like to welcome you all to this celebration of Cindy Vrooman – a beloved friend, mentor and wise woman to us all.

It is impossible to sum up any life in a few hours. But a life so beautiful, so full of passion and commitment; so full of laughter and so wildly subversive. Impossible.

I think we meet here today in awe and just spend a few moments in silent wonder and kinship as we think on this delightful, heroic person whom we have lost – and how much Cindy has given each of us through her unceasing friendship and tenderness.

Cindy had a heart so big she included us all – and made each one of us special. Each one of us special in her circle – no one left out.

Just think of that ever expanding circle: Her family from Port Angeles where she grew up, Her sisters in the Notre Dames who became life long friends and so much deeper than that. Her own family: Dan, the love of her life, her daughters and the tenderness and challenge with which she raised them. How she welcomed Justin and Jason, and how she enfolded her grandchildren and treasured every moment with them. You are at the center of her circle.

Think of her sisters and brothers from St. Leo’s with whom she worked and loved and who inspired her: Her buddies in a society of her women friends they named the Bees: How she stood with and cared for the most vulnerable - the homeless hungry in Sonoma, those broken by life and so many burdens they could not carry alone - whom she championed through Sonoma Overnight Support.

Cindy was a catalyst and a subversive who wanted to topple the old order. She became our companion on the road and made sure we protested when her beloved sisters were under attack from the Vatican. She set our hearts on fire through her liturgies, her stories, and her desire to create a more just and peaceful world. She was our north star in our beloved community of Emmaus for the past dozen years.

For her whole life Cindy was a bride married to amazement. The bridegroom, taking the world into her arms.

Today we take a few moments to simply stand in wonder at what she accomplished and how she made us feel in her presence.

Today we share her immense heart and her fearlessness – together – all her circles united in love and remembrance for her. Everyone is welcome in this community that Cindy built.

If she was here she’d say “Why settle for the illusion of separation when we are endlessly asked to enter into kinship with all.”

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