This is a picture of a grateful servant, Sharon "Guppy" Litchfield, who died on March 5, 2014.
Guppy's whole life was about service from being a foster parent to making sandwiches and doing so much more at Sacred Heart to "adopting" Fenelus Marcony, a Haitian Hearts patient, as her son. And she did all of this serving with a smile.
Guppy lovingly cared for other Haitian Hearts' patients, also. She did so much for so many that we can't give a full accounting of her service. Truly, she was one of those people who don't receive a lot of awards or public recognition in their lives, and if the world worked like it should, she would. She would be a famous role model for everyone.
In his homily, Fr. Larry Zurek used the letters of Guppy's name to describe her. G stands for generous, and she was to all. U stands for unassuming. Guppy was her friendly self. P is for prayerful. "Let's pray about it," was a sentence Guppy often uttered. The second P stands for pilgrim. Guppy traveled to Mexico and more recently Guam in the service of her faith. She was a pilgrim on this earth. Father Larry couldn't decide between yielding and yearning for Y. Guppy's life was about yielding to God's will as she yearned to be with Him. She is, fully, now.
The day after Guppy died, I was organizing some mail on our dining room table. For some reason, there was an old letter from Guppy that she had sent to us from Guam in July 2013, some six months ago. John told me he had put the letter on the table before he left for Haiti. In the letter, Guppy was expressing concern about a friend and asking us to check up on her. It was a good reminder--and emblematic of Guppy's life--that we are all called to be grateful servants.