My Next Door Neighbors

By Joseph J. Mazzella • January 3, 2024

My next door neighbors are a quiet lot. They are the most peaceful neighbors I have ever had. In 30 years living here they have never had a party, or played loud music, or had a nasty argument. They have never bothered me or caused me a single problem. When I go out my back door every morning to walk my dogs I greet them with a smile and soak in their serenity and their silence. You see, I live next to a graveyard.

Now I have talked to a lot of people who think it is creepy to live 20 feet from a graveyard, but I have never been bothered by it a bit. I always get a sense of peace when I walk outside and see it. It always seems beautiful to me too, whether it is seeing the freshly fallen snow on top of the gravestones in the winter and watching the rising sun shine down on them in the summer. My next door neighbors have never once filled me with fear or a sense of dread. Instead they have always served as a reminder that one day my body too will wear down and surrender to the grave. Yet, my soul will continue on to the greater life to come, a life full of never-ending joy, love, and light.

My next door neighbors also remind me each morning when I see them that everyday in this life here is precious. Not a one should be wasted. They all should be lived fully, completely, and wonderfully. They all should be lived with love for God, ourselves, and each other. They should be filled with kindness for everyone we meet. They should be overflowing with gratitude to God and giving to others. They should be a glorious sharing of joy between all of us.

I hope that one day we see this whole world as our neighbors and that we spend each day sharing our love with them. I hope that we see each day here as precious and live it accordingly. And I hope that we never fear the grave but instead look forward to the greater life to come.


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