Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Mark the Perfect Man

Mark the blameless man, and observe the upright;
For the future of that man is peace.
Psalm 37:37 NKJV

My great aunt Dorothy quoted part of this verse from the old King James Bible in a card to my parents when my third brother, Mark was born.

"Mark, the perfect man"

I remember how we laughed at her cleverness. He will live with that story forever.

We returned to Canada from Durban, South Africa on a Norwegian freighter. I remember being sea sick as we rounded the Cape of Good Hope, but I soon adjusted to the motion of the ship. My mother did not adjust as well, as her sickness was from pregnancy. She had three young children, with Mark on the way, and we were 28 days at sea before we landed in Montreal, Quebec.

Returning to Canada in the late summer was a memorable time for me, getting acquainted with family, cousins, a new home, new school and new fangled things like television. (My first mental image of Montreal was of TV antennas. I had never seen a TV before.) Mark was born on March 21 and was a sickly baby. He required emergency surgery for pyloric stenosis but he thrived after this was repaired. Mark and my youngest brother, Stephen, who was born 18 months later, were affectionately referred to as the "little boys". They were my personal charges and I was like a second mother to them. I was already married when they moved to Mexico with my parents, and I did not see them grow up after the age of ten to twelve years old. This picture of Mark was taken just before they left Canada.

Mark is now my only sibling living in Canada and his family is only an hour away from us. He and another unnamed sibling were naturally smart. The other three of us had to work much harder to achieve moments of brilliance. Mark is linguistically gifted and can talk the ear off anyone in Spanish or in English. Very musically talented, he plays several musical instruments and leads in worship at his church.

He has grown into the description of Psalm 37:37 and I am proud to be his sister.

Happy Birthday Mark!


  1. I put comments on and don't know where they get to. if this gets thru I will know it is perversity.

  2. Ruth, what a nice tribute to your brother, Mark. I'm glad you have a sibling in the same country. I hope he has many, many more birthdays!

  3. Wow--28 days at sea! On a freighter! And your poor mom pregnant.
    I must say our ocean crossings were on the QE I and on the Q Mary. From Southampton to NY. From Capetown to Southampton, don't remember. The last time we went direct from Capetown to NYC on a quasi-freighter with about 50 passengers. Didn't take 28 days though.
    I too always adjusted to sea legs very quickly. Even today I love being on ship-board!

  4. Happy Birthday to my little bro.
    I am flattered to be complimented too (back handed).
    BTW, what is the problem about reading MAD magazines while studying. ;)

  5. Dr. BB- Nice to have you drop by. Comments on Blogger are an issue again today!

    Mary- I am glad to have a member of my family here too.I am fortunate to have great in-laws as well.

    KGMom- I still get seasick initially on a boat. We were the only passengers on this boat and we made some stops. When I was younger we did the Capetown to Southampton trip as well.

    SLB- You are so smart that you figured out my little riddle. You and Mark are gifted, the rest of us work at it. The Mad Magazines...I have never forgotten how you studied them instead of your notes for exams.

  6. Interesting little summary about your family. It's interesting that
    in our family the ones who had the highest I.Q's did less with their lives than the ones who had to work at it.

  7. Anonymous7:50 pm GMT-4

    Hi Sis,

    Thanks for the really neat blog. I remember quoting that Psalm 37:37 to Mom one time, "Mark the perfect man . . . . for his end is peace.", to which Mom replied,"Oh, so that's what you call it?"

    Sigh, two points for Mom - again!

    Thanks for adding to my list of memories things I wouldn't know about if you hadn't told me. God has blessed me with a great caring family - and I'm thankful.

    Your little bro.

  8. Larry- How true it is that those who have to work harder sometimes achieve more than a gifted person does. My one brother who coasted through school without much studying, did apply himself in the work world with success. (I am sure he will read this comment)

    Mark- It was a sincere pleasure to honour you with this post.


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