"I am in Pasadena, Texas, to honor my intelligent aunt, full of love and poise, who is like a priceless ruby I had been searching for and found. How fortunate I felt that we finally met in midlife. While living her mortal life, she expressed a priceless gift to everyone present and now lives it herself ―everlasting life.
Just weeks before our nearly 90-year-old Mary Ann left us to live forever in heaven, she and I were speaking. She brought up Jesus, particularly his crucifixion. She looked sad and said in her weak voice, ‘Why would God allow his son to be tortured in the worst way for us? That has bothered me since I was a young girl.’
She caught me by surprise. I answered ‘I don’t know’ for the reason that her question obviously reached deeper than the simple answer which she obviously knew is ‘Because God loved us that much.’
What I have discovered since that day would take more time than allowed here. So, since we witnessed that our Mary Ann had a great love for him, a true heartfelt love, and because she knows Jesus is our only source to God, I will highlight our Mary Ann with Jesus, together, in this eulogy for her.
When it comes to Jesus, a few loud skeptics live among us. They attempt to discredit him, always searching for new evidence outside the Bible to support their theories. But they always hit a brick wall. Check the internet for Works by Josephus, Bible Codes, The Gospel of Truth, Dead Sea Scrolls, Nag Hammadi, and many other sources such as Coptic codices which are ancient Egyptian manuscript texts in book form.
Our Mary Ann held Jesus in high esteem, but cynics do not respect him, instead they shout that he never existed. I am sure that our Mary Ann would join me in saying that Jesus Christ, Lord of Lords, King of Kings walked the earth and brought with him an arsenal of the wisdom of God to save us from sure death.
What other man do we know who hangs his legacy on his words? . . . . who positively influenced people for over 2,000 years? . . . . who is the most honored man who ever lived? . . . . whose body was tortured to death for teaching us how not to sin? . . . . who is recognized by nearly every human on earth . . . . who taught our Mary Ann the path to heaven. . . . . who taught our Mary Ann to teach her children to live by his words: love, righteousness, forgiveness, acceptance which need to serve as everyone’s foundation for life.
This spiritual man of genius came not in fancy robes, because he was most interested in the downtrodden, the poor and abused, which were the multitude of the people at that time. Definitely Jesus was a conduit who came to feed them his words directly from God. If you have not read his words, as we are sure our Mary Ann did, they are easily identifiable. They are unlike any you will ever read. As they take the stage, they are forthright, enchanting, startling, and uplifting, all at the same time.
When reading, I have a habit of underlining nouns and verbs in my books and ignore adjectives and adverbs when in a hurry. But when I read Jesus’ words, underlining is pointless ―because he speaks with such directness that every word proves necessary to articulate his point.
And a very important fact, his words and their syntax (the flowing manner in which he arranges his words) can be found in different sources, not only the Bible. Search for his words on the internet that survived the first century. Learn about his words on thousands of manuscripts that were nearly all confiscated, burned, and labeled as heretic only because they did not fit the agenda of the church during the first, second, and third centuries and beyond. They are passionate, moving words, just like in the Bible, but so many more of them you never knew existed. Check the internet for every book about him that you can get your hands on. May we judge his words now, as we have the right and the ‘way’ by which to acquire them.
Jesus taught, ‘I am the ‘way,’ the truth, and the life, no one reaches the Father but through me.’
Our Mary Ann was still feeling pain of his crucifixion. But he was on a mission. During the immediate years after Jesus, three respected historians acknowledged in their hand-written annals that Jesus Christ was a man who influenced masses of believers to follow him, simply by way of his words and that his followers never diminished, in fact they flourished.
If only those historians knew the numbers have grown to over two billion followers, the historians’ skeletons would sit up in their graves.
Jesus was known by several titles when you read his conversation with others: Lord, Master, Teacher, Rabbi, and Teacher of Righteousness. He was a highly spiritual, superhuman being, a genius who conveyed all answers with truth, beyond satisfaction. He was loving, masculine and feminine (because all humans have a masculine and feminine side). He was fair-minded, explosive, understanding, and forgiving. At one time Jesus told one of his followers, ‘Forgive your brother 49 times 7 times,’ ―which equals 343 times!
Jesus, the Teacher of Righteousness holds the key to our happiness, and in one passage he explains that fact with a mustard seed. Our Mary Ann was a mustard seed, the same mustard seed Jesus speaks of in the Bible. Jesus planted our Mary Ann, a tiny mustard seed, which she was tiny, and watered her every day with his words from his tongue, much the same way a mother speaks to her unborn child while caressing her abdomen.
Jesus taught our Mary Ann that her purpose during this life on earth was to direct her seedlings, the seeds that fell from her (that would be her children, Bitsey and Joseph) to consume the words of God but through him, Jesus Christ. No other man past, present, or future can deliver the words of God better than Jesus Christ.
Our Mary Ann, the tiny mustard seed, blossomed into a strong plant, a strong believer who listened to Jesus and consumed his words of direction to get to heaven, after her body ceased. And her grand reward was: her soul lives for eternity in heaven with those she loves, that means billions of years and longer which means a few more billion years. And so, our Mary Ann’s authentic, never-ending life, her true life . . . has only just begun.
Mary Ann’s seedlings, her children, were guided by her to learn the man, Jesus. And the seedlings of their seedlings were guided to learn the man Jesus. This creates a mushrooming of Jesus-inspired children who grow into adults and join hands family to family, neighborhood to neighborhood, city to city, country to country until the world of peoples, who began as mustard seeds, end war, hate, jealousy, greed, lies, and fornication ―end all those cancers by way of our own accord, meaning we boycott the devil, never tempted by him, war would not exist, keep the devil at bay. In other words, no sin, like in heaven ―which is JESUS’ PURPOSE and GOD’S COMMAND TO HIM.
Imagine you are alone and stranded on an island in the middle of the ocean without your cell phone. No one knows you are there, even after five days. You have no food and are starving, you have no water, nights are cold, no reassurance of any sort, only doom. Suddenly, a ship looms at the horizon. It approaches, steady as she comes, toward you. As it closes in, the more massive it appears. Your heart beats hard with joy, yet it’s eerie as you see only one man on board, manning the ship, and he looks like Jesus. He throws you a life preserver with a rope attached for you to grab onto, and he effortlessly reels you in, clutches onto your arms and raises you onto his grand ship, saving you from death. ‘Thank you!’ you say as water flows from your clothes and pools on the ship’s floor. You ask, ‘Who are you? How did you find me?’
He says while encompassed in bright light, ‘Heed my words. I am here to save not only you from sure death, but your children, their children, and their children’s children on down the eons.’
You then know that he not only looks like Jesus, he is Jesus! And in amazement, as you absorb his truthful words and trust them, without cell phone text interruption, you sail away with him into the sunset, safely back to your world, your home, your little cell phone, and your family ―however, to live a totally different life, a life on earth as it is in heaven. Because that is what Jesus taught you.
Don’t break the chain. Our Mary Ann’s rock hard faith in Jesus greatly contributes to saving our world and from destroying ourselves. We must opt not to die at all, much less die like bugs, never knowing the secret to salvation! A horror! The worst atrocity we could ever experience. But we are not bugs, we are miracles. Our thanks to our Mary Ann that she listened to Jesus, for as her legacy continues, she directs into the eons her entire bloodline. Judging from the love we show for one another, she leads an unknown count of people to Jesus, the spokesman for God.
I am Nancy Reil Riojas, niece to Mary Ann Staudt who I adore.
Thank you for listening, and as Jesus says, ‘Peace be with you.’”
Literary Works by Nancy Reil Riojas©