Katey Morris an inspiring life.

This past week, a space was created when Katey Morris left this world for another.  Katey was married to my friend and co-collaborator in Groundworks, Mike Morris. She bravely fought but ultimately lost her battle with an infection. Her body already weakened intensely by MS. 

I met Katey a few years ago when I began a friendship with Mike.  I remember the first time that we met on the south coast of England where she and Mike lived in extended family with Jayne Scott, and Jayne’s daughter, Kat.  The first time I saw her, I was captivated by her glow and welcoming smile.  Katey was already in the last stages of a painful battle with MS that left her in a wheelchair, completely shut down in her motor skills.  Even her speech was severely labored, and at times, difficult to understand.  But that never stopped her from communicating.  Katey communicated plenty with her enticing eyes and commanding presence. 

While visiting once, Mike and I took Katey for a sunny walk on the boardwalk on the seaside, looking out over the island of Waite.  Mike and I did the walking that day, while Katey sat in her wheelchair and drank in life.  Being with Katey always made me want to truly live life.  I loved watching Mike care for Katey with a tender kindness that spoke of his ocean of love for her.  Tea time always brought a smile to Katey, and Mike knew just how she liked her tea.  Watching the two of them sit together enjoying both a cup of tea and the love between them, always left me feeling like there was so much being communicated.  I, a simple traveler passing through, had the privilege of a front row view of a portrait of love few have ever seen.

I didn’t get to know Katey in the years before MS.  She was an educator who poured herself out investing so much in each of her students.  Reflecting now over her life, I can honestly say that she never stopped being a teacher.  She taught so much to those who had eyes to see and listening ears to hear.  These last few years that I knew her, she taught me what courage looks like.  To glance into her eyes, you would see a confidence and strength that spoke of the interior war that she fought, never to be defined by her outward appearance.  She never lost her love for God, even when the in-dignifying disease struck her in the prime of her life.  She taught me what it looked like to love God in body, mind and spirit.  No prison of physical or emotional pain could rob her of her faith and the promise of what awaited her on the other side. 

Equally impressive was the way Mike cared for Katey.  Watching the two of them always reminded me of something that I read once written by Henri Nouwen, who chose to join the L’Arche Community serving others with disabilities.  Henri Nouwen wrote this profound statement that was worked out from his own life.  “Care always precedes cure.”  Those simple words struck me and caused me to reflect over the notion that this instant, fast-paced world, where we seek solutions and answers with a quick click of the mouse while evaluating success by sudden results, fails to account for the space needed to care and love with patience.  In Mike’s love for Katey, I saw a constant level of care that was both inspiring and healing. 

Maybe we fail to see more cures because we fail to actually care for one another.  Maybe the miracles we seek will only come when we lovingly care for the one in need of the cure. 

Watching Katey and Mike together, and observing Mike’s care for her in a slow, steady, tender way, brought great healing to my soul.  Their love story inspired and healed a skepticism in me, as they modeled a love that is found only in heaven.  Mike and Katey’s love brought heaven to earth, and brought healing to me in a profound way. The Apostle Paul spoke in powerful words about authentic love, describing it with such words as patient, kind, and long suffering. Their beautiful love and ultimate commitment to each other through all the pain and suffering spoke to me about a God inspired Love that has the power to remain inspite of the struggle. The apostle Paul ends his letter about love this way. “And now these three things remain; faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

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2 Responses to “Katey Morris an inspiring life.”

  1. Josh Hendon Says:

    Great post, Ken. Thanks for sharing about Katey and Mike and their love for each other.

  2. amanda shelley Says:

    I read the couple’s book about praying together and I was struck by Katie’s patience and gentleness.I’m quite shocked to find that she no longer is of this world.It’s so sad.The book really rekindled my faith in marriage,especially Katie was a great inspiration and a model to follow both as a wife and as a human being.

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