OCTOBER 18TH – 29th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
“OUR NATION PAUSED TO PAY TRIBUTE TO A GREAT LADY”
by Fr. Walt Wainwright
From the moment the news of the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg hit the airways countless numbers of people began in their own way to pay tribute to her and express their own deep sense of loss at her passing. As well they should and as we all should even though that very difficult week has passed and the world takes up all its other business once again.
On Friday, September 25th, when her body was brought to the Capital to lie in state that was an even more significant tribute. It was the first time a woman was ever accorded this tribute of lying in state in the Statuary Hall of the Capital. I saw the opening of this special day. It was truly extraordinary. The speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, extended the formal welcome to the family of the Justice and expressed the condolences of the nation. Her brief words were followed by a very prayerful eulogy given by Justice Ginsberg’s Rabbi from Washington.
The eulogy was one that touched my heart very deeply because the Rabbi spoke from the heart and in her words she spoke of the heart of the Justice but mostly she spoke about Justice Ginsberg’s greatest virtue which was JUSTICE.
Not everyone in our country agreed with the opinions of Justice Ginsberg since many felt she was too liberal. But one thing everyone has to agree on, the Justice always sought to promote justice itself in all that she did. I was especially touched by the story that when Justice Ginsberg’s mother died when Ruth was only in her early teens and her father had to apply for government assistance, the amount he received was not a just amount. In those days since the female parent was the one who died it was believed that the surviving partner would not need so much assistance. Many years later when Justice Ginsberg was on the Supreme Court she fought to change that law and stress that men were as equal as women. Justice was the hallmark in the mind of the Justice and justice was wheat she always fought for. Justice had to be equal for ALL the people: male and female. This was her greatest legacy left for the good of our nation.
May Justice Ginsberg rest in peace. I know, I rarely single out individuals in my writings like this but I believe Justice Ginsberg deserved it. Her mark will remain always not as a liberal, not because she fought so dearly for women’s rights, it will remain because she fought so tirelessly for everyone’s rights. She deserves well, eternal peace.