A sad but inspiring journey of a Catholic journalist, dead at 40

Death is nothing new to me.

Both of my parents died young, I’ve experienced the loss of friends and other family members, and I held my mother’s hand as she passed into the afterlife. As a journalist, I’ve covered more funerals and death-related tragedies than I care to count.

Emilie Lemmons

Emilie Lemmons

So, when I was assigned a story today about a Minnesota Catholic journalist who lost her 16-month battle with cancer at the age of 40, I didn’t flinch.

Then I read Emilie Lemmons’ column — “Notes from a New Mom” about how she was dealing with her grim prognosis — in the Dec. 17 issue of The Catholic Spirit, newspaper of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, and I found myself more inspired than sad.

The column was moving, spiritual, and forced me to examine my own mortality. I highly recommend giving it a read.

It turned out to be the last column Lemmons would write for the paper. She died Christmas Eve, leaving behind a husband, two small sons, parents, siblings and friends. The number of comments on her blog, Lemmondrops, reacting to her husband’s announcement of her death (280 at last count) would suggest that she has continued to inspire others.

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4 Responses to A sad but inspiring journey of a Catholic journalist, dead at 40

  1. Holly says:

    We remember the dead and ask them to intercede for us in these trying times with Christ.

    Dont forget people they have been called home and they are as useful as ever even more so now.

    We send them off with love and look out and pray for each other and draw closer in the Lord.

    Love in Christ
    Brothers and Sisters.

  2. Pat Norby says:


    Thank you for the beautiful obituary about Emilie. You managed to cull a coherent comment from me and the perfect quotes from Emilie’s blog and Joe’s column. Thank you also, for sharing your own experiences. It helped me to know that you have such great empathy.

  3. Jared Olar says:

    God grant her soul rest and receive her into everlasting habitations, and pour out his comforting Spirit on her loved ones.

  4. maryspaul07 says:

    Yes, we will pray for the eternal repose of the soul of Emilie and we also pray for her family.

    My reflection of death is this: DEATH is the Day that one Enters into Another Time and Home! Emilie has entered into another time (eternity) and her new home with God our Creator! It is the best Christmas gift for her!

    God bless us always.

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