Monday, August 11, 2008

Cameron Keating

Stained Glass from the Basilica de San Giuseppe al Trionfale, Rome
Yesterday I received an email message that caused my heart and soul to stand still - and join the angels in heaven as they welcomed a most talented person and special friend, Cameron Keating.

Today I received this message from Cameron's sister:
In the afternoon of Sunday August 10th my sister Cameron Keating went home to be with the Lord. She had struggled with Multiple Myeloma for fifteen years and now she is finally free from the incredible pain and suffering because she is now with the Glorious Saviour who loves her more than words can express. We will go to see her, but she will not return here. As I told my grandson Evan, be happy for her because they're having a "Cameron" party for her now in Heaven. A memorial service is being planned for her to take place on September 13th at three o'clock in the afternoon at All Angels Episcopal Church Manhattan.

The day of Cameron's death was also the Feast of Saint Lawrence. It was on August 10th, 258 A.D. that a young Roman Christian named Lawrence was martyred by the emperor Valerian by being roasted alive on a grid iron. Later that night as his mourners carried his body away dozens of streaks of light fell from the sky, which prompted his friends to believe that even the heavens were weeping for him. And every year since, almost to the date, the skies weep again on what some still call "The Night Of St. Lawrence's Tears." This year, the skies are not weeping, but they were shedding TEARS OF JOY, celebrating the life of Cameron Keating.

(Astronomers have identified this phenomena as the Perseid meteor shower, which occurs every year at about this time.)

I first met Cameron about twenty years ago when we were parishioners at All Angels' Episcopal Church in New York City. She was an outstanding singer and through her music brought many people to a closer experience of God. Together, with many others in the parish, we welcomed displaced people into the life of the parish, and through a Sunday evening "Gospel Music" Eucharist, dinner and outreach activities, the church came to include the homeless and people on the margins as actual "confirmed members" of the parish.

The pictures are from the NYC subway station at Prince Street on Broadway

7 comments:

Willym said...

For some reason when I read this I was reminded of the ending of Oscar Wilde's wonderful The Happy Prince:

"Bring me the two most precious things in the city," said God to one of His Angels; and the Angel brought him the leaden heart and the dead bird.

"You have rightly chosen," said God, "for in my garden of Paradise this little bird shall sing for evermore, and in my city of gold the Happy Prince shall praise me."

May light perpetual shine upon her.

Anonymous said...

I happened to think of Cameron's name this evening and Googled it, to find your blog post at the top of the list. I met this lovely woman only once, at the first CITA networking conference in Chicago in 1992. She performed a one-woman musical called "Early One Morning", written by her then-husband, whose name has escaped me. It is still one of the most memorable pieces of worship theater I've ever seen. By the way, I am an old friend of another All Angels parishioner, Michael Lehmann.

--Laurie Nichols
godsbooklover.wordpress.com

Dr. Lou said...

I knew Linda Macklem many years before she became Cameron Keating. We maintained a close friendship for 30 years. She will be greatly missed. Love always, Louis

Juanita said...

I have been thinking of my dear dear friend for a very long time. I sent a Christmas card to her last December only for it to be returned to me. I have continued to wonder where she had gone, not wanting to face that I may never see her or be able to hear her voice again. This evening I decided to google her name, Cameron Joy Keating only to find she has gone to be with our Lord. I met Linda Macklem when she was working on her Master's in Physiology at Michigan State University between 1976-1977. I had been feeling so very depressed and didn't even care if I lived or died. Because I was feeling so unhappy, I decided to visit an evening church service I had recently heard was quite excellent. In doing so, wouldn't you know, sitting next to me would be my new best friend in the Lord.
From that evening on, we did become best friends and roommates.
We attended bible studies at Owen Hall, went to church together with out friends, and even ate with our bible study friends at Ponderosa every Friday afternoon. Linda was so very smart and knew so much about the bible and God. Through her I finally learned that God does love me and that I should not be afraid to love Him and others back. I had never known anyone who accepted me just the way I am like Jesus would. Linda even traveled home with me one weekend to meet my parents. She played the piano at our house the way it has never been played since. My parents have never forgotten her and would often ask if I had heard from her. I even traveled with Linda to her home in Connecticut and met her Dad, Mother, and her sister. I also attended church with her in Darien. Those days and the following few years were the best I have ever enjoyed. God sent an angel to help save me just at the right time. How wonderful He is and how wonderful that it was Linda who came into my life. I have missed those years and our friendship. If ever I needed someone to listen with an understanding heart I knew it would be her wisdom I needed to hear. We continued to stay in touch, but her illness made it so much harder with me in Michigan and her in New York. So often she wanted to talk to me, but was just to weak and tired. I have missed her these past many years and will miss her the rest of my life. However, I am happy she is no longer suffering and can sing with the angels in the presence of our Lord.

Juanita said...

I have been thinking of my dear dear friend for a very long time. This evening I decided to google her name, Cameron Joy Keating only to find she has gone to be with our Lord. I met Linda Macklem when she was working on her Master's in Physiology at Michigan State University between 1976-1977. I had been feeling so very depressed and didn't even care if I lived or died. Because I was feeling so unhappy, I decided to visit an evening church service I had recently heard was quite excellent. In doing so, wouldn't you know, sitting next to me would be my new best friend in the Lord and roommate.
Linda was so very smart and knew so much about the bible and God. Through her I finally learned that God does love me and that I should not be afraid to love Him and others back. I had never known anyone who accepted me just the way I am like Jesus would. Linda even traveled home with me one weekend to meet my parents. She played the piano at our house the way it has never been played since. My parents have never forgotten her and would often ask if I had heard from her. I even traveled with Linda to her home in Connecticut and met her Dad, Mother, and her sister. I also attended church with her in Darien. Those days and the following few years were the best I have ever enjoyed. God sent an angel to help save me just at the right time. How wonderful He is and how wonderful that it was Linda who came into my life. I have missed those years and our friendship. If ever I needed someone to listen with an understanding heart I knew it would be her wisdom I needed to hear. We continued to stay in touch, but her illness made it so much harder with me in Michigan and her in New York. So often she wanted to talk to me, but was just to weak and tired. I have missed her these past many years and will miss her the rest of my life. However, I am happy she is no longer suffering and can sing with the angels in the presence of our Lord.

Eddie Monah said...

She was my aunt. She was, from what I heard, knew, and sometimes experienced firsthand, a wonderful, brilliant woman with an excellent sense of humour.
Here are some of the books she left to me:
http://www.amazon.com/How-Live-Neurotic-Stephen-Baker/dp/0517118424
http://www.amazon.com/Grunt-Pigorian-Chant-Snouto-Domoinko/dp/0761105948/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1316267268&sr=1-1

Anonymous said...

I searched for Cameron today (beginning of 2013) and found these posts. I just came across an advertisement for a performance she did in 1992 of a one-act musical with her as Mary Magdalene. Called "Early One Morning" it was written by Ronald Melrose and directed by Ed Stern. It was so beautiful that I took the time in my prayers today to thank God for her.