Mr. Liao Hong-Ming died peacefully on December 17, ‘with a smile on his face’ as Rev. Philip Lin wrote in his announcement – and today was his funeral and cremation at the Taipei Second Funeral Home.
Mr. Liao was the husband of Mrs. Chao, who until she retired last year was our colleague in the St. John’s University Chaplaincy. In fact they both worked at St. John’s University (and as it was formerly known, St. John’s and St. Mary’s Institute of Technology) for virtually all of their working lives, serving faithfully on the administrative staff, devoting their time, energy and expertise to ensure the smooth running of the school. They were both totally dedicated to their work, to their family, to their church and to Almighty God. The world definitely needs more loyal and faithful servants like Mr. Liao and Mrs. Chao.
Mr. Liao became ill some years ago, and has shown amazing resilience, determination and fortitude in the face of so much pain and increasing agony. All through his illness, Mrs. Chao and family and friends have all been beside him, supporting and encouraging him. Their faith has kept them strong, and the support of their friends from Good Shepherd Church and former colleagues has lightened the load.
Today at his funeral, Rev. Lennon Chang spoke of the joy of knowing that Mr. Liao is now in the presence of Almighty God, held in his arms, and that for those who believe that Jesus is the way, the truth and life, that opportunity is open to us too. The service was beautifully led by Good Shepherd Church clergy and lay leaders, and finished with us all placing orchid flowers on the open coffin as they prepared his body for cremation.
About 100 of us joined in the funeral service, including some who, like me, cannot get to next Saturday’s Memorial Service at Good Shepherd Church. All were there to show their respect and gratitude to Mr. Liao, and to show support to Mrs. Chao and the family. Having so many good friends and colleagues around at such a time is a great blessing.
Thanking God for Mr. Liao’s life and witness; may he rest in peace and rise in glory. And praying for God’s comfort and grace to sustain Mrs. Chao, their 3 children and all the family throughout this sad time.