Back in the summer, I discussed Prayer in the Park (PIP), an annual function the church we attend, holds during the warmer months. Instead of 'Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting' the regular attenders, and more than a few stragglers, show up at the local park with covered dishes. There is a pot luck dinner and a speaker afterwards. I posted recipes, took pictures of the food and generally babbled on about what happens there and the fact I tried to make something new and different each time. I also posted about Mildred at that time. Mildred was an anchor and mainstay in this church. No one didn't know Mildred or hadn't interacted with her. In her 90's, Mildred still had her fingers in many, many pies around the church. Some people would describe Mildred as an 'old maid' or 'maiden auntie', but she never fit any title that sounded like that. Mildred, to put it mildly was a dynamo, one that couldn't be stopped. Or could she.
A couple of years ago, she was diagnosed with a heart disorder. Surgery could have fixed it, but it was risky enough that it could have killed her. She opted to not have the surgery and let God do what God knows best. This was almost three years ago. As the Summer of 2009 came, Mildred was showing the effects of this condition. She was fairly much house bound, but her door never hit the jamb from someone leaving before someone else came in. Pastors and laity came to minister to her but each left feeling uplifted and better than when they came in. It was Mildred who ministered to each of us, she hugged us, prayed for us and asked if she could pray for our 'troubles'...no comment on herown. I was fortunate enough to be 'responsible' for 'feeding Mildred' on PIP nights. The church has a service ministry that provides meals on an as needed basis to the sick and Mildred was on the list to receive a meal on Wednesday nights. Since she ate like a bird, I decided to make her, instead of the usual platter we sent from PIP to othr shut-ins, Dixie Cup Dinners. I took about eight hot cups and put a little bit of this in one, and a little bit of something else in another. She warmed my heart by telling me how much she liked my 'little surprise packages' Her only request: chocolate, and the more the better. Yes, our sainted little Mildred had a vice, and I found it....CHOCOLATE!
This past Monday, January 18th, at 2:45 p.m., Mildred fulfilled her journey in this mortal existence. Mildred is with the angels now. We want to cry for our sadness, but we should rejoice that Mildred is now where she has worked and prayed and wished for for a long time. I believe Jesus, the One she served so many, many years, personally met her at the gate, took her hand, one that wasn't lined or shaky, tucked it under His arm and showed her around. She was so happy to see her family who went before her, she was shown the choir loft where our friend Donna is leaning over Bach's shoulder, making sure she got the note right, she waved and told Amy Taylor how glad she was to meet her as she prayed for her during her illness. She got to hold baby Rachel, who came to heaven just a few days before her, then she got fitted for her long white robes and shown her place in the celestial sphere where she can now only begin to really worship God the way she has wanted to.
Mildred had no children, no close relatives. She did, however, leave behind a lot of people who were privileged to have known her, to have experienced her ministrations and know the feeling of having her pray for them. Her funeral is to be Wednesday, at the church she grew up in and served. I don't think there will be an open spot in the pews. Afterwards, there will be a luncheon in her honor. I have been asked to help prepare an item for this luncheon. This is where Mildred's vice comes in (I can hear her giggling in heaven over me calling this a vice). My dear friend, Barb, posted a recipe on her blog The Tattooed Lady about Oreo BonBons. I made them once and Barb is right, these things are so rich and so chocolatey that to eat more than two would set your teeth on edge and put you into a chocolate coma. In other words, Mildred would have LOVED these things. So, for Mildred, with thanks to Barb (since I'm swiping her recipe here)....here are the Oreo Bonbons:
1 1 lb. package of oreos (you can use regular, mint or I have used peanut butter)
1 8 oz. package of cream cheese
1 12 oz. package of chocolate melts (candy wafers to melt to make chocolate molds)
Whirl oreos in food processor until they are a fine crumbled mess. Add cream cheese (which should be at room temp, easier to mix in) and continue to whirl until it looks like swamp mud in your food processor. Make walnut (or smaller) sized balls from this mixture and place on a cookie sheet. Chill for at least an hour to set up. When balls are chilled, melt the chocolate. Dip each ball in the melted chocolate and return to chill until chocolate is set.
I will take pics at the luncheon and post later. I am having trouble writing luncheon instead of what we usually refer to as a 'Dead Spread'....somehow I can see Mildred laughing, because we once talked about being happy at funerals and some of the ways we can make light and lift spirits, she thought Dead Spread was a funny way to say it instead of 'hanging your head, speaking in low, deep tones, and say "funeral luncheon"..... Mildred, honey, these are for your Dead Spread....Love ya!!!