On Palm Sunday, one year ago, my wife Jenna went into early labor and began hemorrhaging. She almost died. Our twin sons, Ezra and Leo, were born late that night, too little and too weak to survive. They died. I never made it to church that Sunday. But I want to share with you the sermon I would have preached that morning. It’s a sermon about a hospital room, about facing pain and death, and when I wrote it, I had no idea that I would spend that very day in a hospital room, facing pain and death. In the quiet of my grief, I returned to this sermon and found God speaking to me—in words I never knew were intended for me.
I share them with you now.
Read More “A Good Death” – A Palm Sunday Sermon
Where is God when we have no strength left?
Read this powerful sermon of strength and hope that Patrick shared with his congregation during a special service on the longest night of the year, a service that recognizes that even at Christmas many were experiencing loss, darkness, and doubt. Along with Patrick, find the miracle of one more breath. One more step.
Read More A Sermon for Strength
New years bring new beginnings, new hopes, new dreams. There is perhaps no greater testament to this fact than the transformation of our empty nursery, whose door was once ominously closed but is now swung open in excited anticipation…
Read More An Empty Nursery
O’ Childless Mother This Christmas, I see you. Today marks 2 years since the due date of our first baby lost to miscarriage. From one childless mother to another, know that you do not have to face this Christmas alone.
Read More O’ Childless Mother This Christmas
As we enter Advent, the season of waiting for the Christ child, Presbyterian Outlook is sharing the stories of parents who bear the grief of infertility, pregnancy loss and infant loss. As a part of this series, Presbyterian Outlook graciously asked Patrick to write a reflection on stillbirth from a father’s perspective. Read this, as well as the stories of other parents who have endured the pain of grief, in this remarkable series.
Read More See me: A father’s perspective on stillbirth
The world of grief feels like a parallel universe, an Upside Down underworld that one must journey through to reach “Acceptance.” But is Acceptance truly accepted in the Land of the Living? Or is there another place where both darkness and light, both pain and peace can live together?
Read More The Upside Down, Alternate Reality of Grief
Even in the face of death, it is easy to lose perspective and forget the miraculous wonder of everyday life. Rediscover this with me as I explore the tension of grief and gratitude that I have felt on this journey.
Read More Grief and Gratitude
“A Pastoral Response to Charlottesville” – Our children will light our way through this eclipse
A letter to the congregation of Westminster Presbyterian Church, Auburn, NY,
Read More A Pastoral Response to Charlottesville
from Rev. Patrick David Heery
On August 21st, the day we had dreamed would be our baby boys’ birthday, the cosmos itself will grieve with us. On that day, a total solar eclipse will cross the entire country for the first time in 99 years. The sun will blacken, the crickets will chirp, and for a brief moment the bright daytime sky will become as dark as night.
Read More When Day Becomes Night
Reading “Harry Potter” through the lens of grief for the first time has opened my eyes to this story’s powerfully intimate portrayal of death, depression, and pain.
Read More A Griever’s Guide to “Harry Potter”