James was a credit to himself, his family and to God. He is dearly missed by those who knew and loved him, left to come to terms with his loss on this mortal plane. We are consoled by the knowledge that he is safe and well with God but, if only we could visit one another now and then.
Four years ago we were in chemistry making jokes, laughing, discussing sports, and playing footy. One year ago you joined the heavens too soon. It's been an interesting year mate. I haven't forgotten you in anything I have done. No day has gone passed where I haven't thought of our friendship, and how good it be to have you here with us. I will not spend the day in mourning, rather I will celebrate our friendship, your life, and continue to look forward to the day we meet again. I miss you heaps buddy, I give my love to you and your family, and I promise I will visit Waverly in the New Year. Love and Miss You Buddy
Nothing would give me more pleasure than looking for a gift for you - too easy. Cricket - say no more! Di xxx
Its hard to know what to say now that Mac's not here anymore. I still think of him everyday, just wanted to say that his friends have forgotten him, don't think we could. Sending my love up to the clouds xxxxx
The birthday of James was a very sad occasion for his family and friends. For the first time in 20 years he wasn't there. His family gathered together and remembered a special and beautiful life over a meal of pesto - James favourite meal. We visted his gravesite and by coincidence were joined by 8 of his friends from NHSPA: Aki, Dimitri, James H, Jarrah, Jesse, Riley, Steve and Zoe. We sadly paid our respects and experienced our loss whilst looking out over the white crosses of the cemetery to the blue Pacific Ocean. But it was also uplifting because we took the time to reflect and remember James, a man who loved life and lived it to the max. We shared our stories and laughed together about James, the sporting wiz, master sledger, perfec mimic, keen train traveller, good trumpet player and great wit who was always such fun to be with. 'The sprightly wit and lively eye, The engaging smile, The gaiety, That laughed down many a summer sun, And kept us up so 'oft till one'.
Happy Birthday Mac, you would have been 20 and thats still too young not to be down here with the rest of us. This is never going to seem fair but I hope wherever you are you understand why all this happened much more than anyone does down here. Sending my love now and forever to your precious family and of course to you boy!, wherever out there in the twilight you are.. LOOOVE and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! p.s are you rolling your eyes at me right now? heh xx
James Macca Mclellan. I won't ever forget the years we knew each other at high school. From early beginnings which involved discussing Rugby League, Union and Cricket. Giving our tips on who would win, and which players were terrible at the sports and don't deserve their places. Or in Maths when we used to sit at the back of the class and hit each other on the back with items ranging from plastic and metal rulers to the spine of our maths textbook. In later years we were in the same Chemistry class and every lesson was full of laughs. We would discuss what Mr Perrington was teaching us, come to our answers - which were usually revealed over 45 minutes later as being correct - and dive right into making jokes about everything and anything. Two I won't forget were making jokes about Cricket umpire Billy Bowden playing rugby league, and commentating an imaginary game of rugby league using the names of chemicals from the Periodic Table. I remember the last day I saw you at school, playing footy at the basketball courts in the morning - it was like any other. Footy, making jokes about each other, scoring ridiculous tries and sledging each other like crazy. Then a few days later I got a phone call from Mike telling me that you were in hospital with leukemia. To say it was a shock is an absolute understatement. Since the day of your passing, no day has passed where I have not thought of you. I wish things were different. Happy Birthday Young Friend.
I didn't know James, but he sounded like a great person and like he was full of love and kindness. It's so sad that someone with so much life still left to live had to leave this world so quickly. As soon as I read this, I felt like crying. I cant imagen what his family would be going through. I hope where ever james is he is being taken care of, I dont know if a God exits but if he does im sure he is taking care of him. R.I.P JAMES
James - what a fighter. Sadly I only got to know you while we waited in HOAC for our doctors, or if one of us was well enough to roam the transplant ward. Of all the patients I'd ever met, James was the most gracious about his circumstances. He'll always remind of what true courage and grace under fire, really is. I'll never forget when James excitedly told me about the existence of the World Transplant Games. I'm sure he had in mind a plan to compete at the next possible event. His love of sports was so infectious, that now even I'm thinking of trying out for the next games. I'll try to win a medal for you... Thank you James, for reminding us to be always strong, always humble, to the end.
I've been reading these over lots and lots.. The Book of Wisdom- The soul of the virtuous man is in the hand of God, No torment shall ever touch him. In the eyes of the unwise, he did appear to die, His going looked like a disaster, His leaving us, like annihilation; But he is in peace. Though he experienced suffering as we see it, His hope was rich with immortality; Great though his affliction, greater still will his blessings be. God has put him to the test And proved him worthy to be with him; He has tested him like gold in a furnace, And accepted his life as a beautiful gift. The word of the lord… The Book of Wisdom- The virtuous man, though he die before his time, will find rest. Length of the days is not what makes age honourable, Nor years the true measure of a life; Understanding- this is real maturity; A beautiful life- this is ripe old age. He has lived a life pleasing to God, so God has loved him for it; Coming to perfection in so short a time, He achieved what it takes others a lifetime to achieve; His life being so pleasing to God, that God has taken him quickly from the darkness around him. Yet people look on, uncomprehending; It does not enter their heads That grace and mercy await the chosen of the Lord, and protection, his holy ones. The word of the Lord.. MISS YOU MAC!
I'll never forget saying good morning to him nearly every day for 6 years at high school. He used to sit behind me in roll call, and we'd talk about everything. His favourite topics always included how we were doing in maths relative to each other, did I understand this problem or that and whomever was the favourite teacher to tease this week. He was there every day until he wasn't - and that's the horrible thing about those memories. He was there, and then we knew he was getting sicker - but then he just stopped coming. Till one day one of my friends got a call when I was in maths. Of course it was in maths, his favourite subject that we heard the news that he was sick. However - even when he was sick and in hospital he had a great pull over us, his year group. Organising a concert in his honour, and having the whole school donate money to the cause was among the highlights of my year 12. Thankyou James for all the memories and everything you did. You'll never, ever be forgotten.
The timing is all wrong, isn’t it? Here we have a wonderful, a beautiful, young man, full of promise, beloved by family and friends, taken from us before he has fully started. Death is always a sad and painful business, but the death of the young is especially painful and distressing. Of course, as we know, he trusted God. But surely that is the point isn’t it? The timing is all wrong. What good has his trust in God done? He still suffered; he has still been taken; we are still here with grief and loss. Does his faith help us or does it make the whole thing worse? What we can say is that, faced with the worst, James did not lose faith. His faith was tested, but it did not fail him. He died in faith, looking steadfastly to God and his promises. In fact, far from despairing, he wanted you to respond to the message of the Bible and, like him, to become a follower of Jesus Christ. One of the biblical passages which nourished his faith and challenges us to have his faith is Acts 17:16-34. This part of the Bible takes us to the famous city of Athens – in those days one of the cultural, intellectual, educational capitals of the world. We are allowed to observe a seminal encounter on the one side the philosophers and religious leaders of that ancient day 2000 years ago, and on the other the Christian Apostle Paul, one of the greatest men in history, a follower and preacher of Jesus Christ. The Apostle told them four great truths which were true then as they are true now. These truths are the ones which gave James his sense of meaning and purpose in life, which kept him strong, which actually enabled him to cope with the mystery of why he was dying as a young person. They provide a strong answer to all who question, and a deep comfort to all who mourn. The first truth: all people are religious. We are born that way. Whenever we ask the big questions, questions like why? And who? And when? And how?, we are asking religious questions, questions that the animals never ask. Now we can suppress these questions; we can pretend they do not matter; we can avoid them. But then, suddenly, perhaps in the middle of the night, or when you are looking at something really majestic, or perhaps when a young and very promising friend dies of an awful disease, the questions come up again. Why has this happened? Who is responsible? When will it be my turn? What is my goal in life meant to be? The lazy way out is to ignore the issues and to fill your life with so much noise that you cannot even think any more. Or we can find our meaning and our answers by devoting our lives to possessions, or to work, or to play. We are frightened to ask the questions and frightened that the answer may be very uncomfortable. Or perhaps we do not know where to look for an answer. Who am I? I do not know and I cannot find out. We are religious, but the truth is hard to find. The second truth: we are designed to search for the real God. There is an answer to our questions and the answer is the true God. I know some people want to say that there is no God, but this is only a way of hiding from him. The truth of the matter is that there is one God. He is the God who is responsible for everything we see and touch and taste and feel and smell. He has made the world, he owns it and he runs it. He is in charge. We are God’s lost sons and daughters. The chief business of your life is to seek him – to have proper relationship with him. He is the answer to the question, who? And when you see that he is the answer, you can begin to see who you are as well. What is your life about? What is its purpose, its meaning its goal? It is to find God and then treat him as God. It is for you to come home to your real Father. That is what the Bible calls repentance; it is an experience which we are all meant to have; it is the secret of James’ life. Coming home to God does not mean that you can answer all the questions such as the timing of James’ death – but it does mean that you know that there is an answer and that is a good and fair one. The Bible tells us that what looks like mere chaos contains order and purpose and design. If you look at the back of a piece of embroidery, nothing makes sense – it seems random and messy. But the front contains a perfectly made picture. The third truth: there is a day of judgment. This world is a place of testing. It is not an easy and painless place. It is full of suffering and hurt. But, it is only the beginning of our lives. We are all made to live in eternity. History is rushing forward towards a fixed point, a day of testing, a day of assessment, as unavoidable as it is necessary. The Bible calls it the day of judgment and it warns us that we will be judged according to the law of God, not our own low standards and that it will involve all that we have done, all that we have said and all that we have thought. No human court, no matter how awe-inspiring can compare for an instant with God’s tribunal. The reason why we have not bumped up against this as yet is God’s patience. He does not wish us to fail this test. He wishes us to belong to him, to claim our heritage as his daughter, his son. But he will not be patient for ever. His day is fixed. Death itself is a sort of preliminary reminder of the judgment. For death is not natural; it is all part of our divorce from God, that we experience death in the world. The Bible says that death is the last enemy and it warns us that after death comes judgment. That is why the big issue is not: the timing question - ‘how much life did you receive?’ but the relationship question - ‘Are you ready to meet your God?’ You do not judge a life by its length, but by its love. Do we pass the test? James was ready to meet God his Father. Why? The fourth truth: the judge of all people is one of us. He is on our side. That is the surprisingly good news. That is why James was confident in his future. He already knew the Judge. God wanted his children to come home; he so wanted his children to come home, that he entered his own world, that the Son of God, Jesus, entered the world as one of us. He actually came and lived our life – of course he did it to perfection. He was not under the death penalty like the rest of us. But we could not stand him and we put him to death by crucifixion. And in the strangest but truest of ways, it was as if the judgment day arrived early. He was judged instead of us; he died so that you could go free; he died so that you may be forgiven by God; he died so that you do not have to fear the judgment day, because you have been acquitted already. It seems too good to be true – so how do we know that it is? God inserted his proof into human history by raising Jesus from the dead. He did not let him stay in his grave. Three days after his death he was alive again; when they looked, his grave was empty; when the looked around they saw him and touched him and ate with him and talked to him. Did James fear death and judgment? Well you can be sure that he hated death and did not want to die. Of course there were a thousand things he still wanted to do and be; of course he was so sorry about leaving friends and family; of course he did not want to suffer; of course he was anxious about the process. But he was not in any way possessed by fear of judgment. He knew that he had done wrong and failed to keep the law of God. If he was confident in death, it was not because he was a good man, but because he had a great friend, a great Savior, a great God. It was because he personally knew the Judge, Jesus Christ. Young as he was, he had learned the greatest truth of all. He already knew God. He was ready. We do not know how or why – but we can believe that the timing was right for him and even for us. We are so sad that James has died and died so young. He will be painfully missed as long as any who knew him are still alive on this earth. But our sadness is not a hopeless pain. He has not passed into oblivion just like a piece of dust. Nor has he gone to God’s judgment without any chance of passing the test on his life. On the basis of the sure word of God, he knew that when he left us, he was going to a better place and a fuller life. He knew that death was not going to be the last word. He knew that the judge on the day of judgment was the one who loved him and who died for him. He knew that he had already been forgiven and that he had nothing to fear. We may not be able to see it, but even the timing was right. And James wanted me to say this to you: have you trusted yourself and your future to Jesus? He found that this was the way to live and to die, and he wanted you to have that same hope too. So his family are very sad. But it is not the misery of despair. It is a grief which contains hope and even thankfulness to God. It is not all over; they will see each other again. God’s children feel the same piercing pain as anyone else; they are not spared that. But they also know the deep, consoling power of hope: they know, as James knew, that he is safe home with Jesus. Peter Jensen, Archbishop of Sydney 3 Dec 2009
It is such a tragedy that someone so young should leave this life. May you find peace in the quieter moments of your lives.