The day Connie sat down in my office to share her story I could tell that she was being as honest as possible. She was not trying to convince me to believe something; she was telling me what she had experienced. I knew that she believed her experiences were real even if she was afraid that I did not. I saw no evidence that someone else was taking advantage of her grief or manipulating her for personal gain. Connie did not go seeking these experiences; they found her. The most important thing I saw in her story is how these amazing events helped bring healing to her spirit. My hope is that they can bring healing to lives of others who are hurting.
As a pastor, one of my concerns is how this story fits into my theology. It will be helpful for you to know that my theology is centered on grace, God’s unconditional love for humanity. I believe there is nothing more important than love, loving God and loving neighbor. When I hear the messages from Brandy, they are consistent with my theology. She cannot stop talking about love. One night I was reading the thirteenth chapter of I Corinthians. It is sometimes called Paul’s love chapter and therefore is read at about ninety percent of the weddings I perform. I often tell couples that it is a beautiful passage for their wedding, but Paul was not talking about marriage when he wrote it. Paul was talking about the most important thing in life – love. Without love we have missed the point; we are nothing. I realized that this chapter reflects Brandy’s messages. She tells her mother the same thing and, ultimately, that love never ends. It is from the Apostle Paul that Connie and I found the title for our book.
This book is Connie and Brandy’s story. It is a story of incredible pain and loss, but it is also a story about healing and love. My role has been to listen to Connie’s voice and to put it on paper. If you read this story, my prayer is that you can open your mind to the possibilities of love and the promise that all of our lives have meaning and purpose in this world and the next.
Barry Dundas, Senior Pastor
Trinity Untied Methodist Church
To Purchase the book, click here