The following is an update for a prayer request submitted not too long ago to friends and family. It is about our ailing dog who was quickly coming to the end of her life here with us.  Thank you for taking the time to to read this memorial for her and to continue in prayer for us.

PENNDEL, PENNSYLVANIA, USA.  At 9:45 PM, Wednesday, 25 February 2015, Madilyn Grace Christian Winger passed away at her home in Penndel, PA. She was in no pain and went peaceably in her mother's arms while they were both resting together in the family's favorite easy chair.

Maddie Grace was born in May of 2000 and had come to live as a member of the Winger Family in March of 2001.  Her previous owner had passed away at a very young age when Maddie Grace was only ten months old and thus had come to the Wingers.

She was a black in color Pug and her original registered name before she came to the Wingers had been Madilyn.  The etymology of this name is that it is a derivation of the Latin name Magdalene, referring to Mary Magdalene of the Bible. That Mary was the first person to whom Jesus appeared when he arose from the dead on Easter morning. Mary was originally from Magdala, a village on the Sea of Galilee. Magdala comes from the Hebrew word Tower. So in most books of names the meaning of the name Magdalene, thus Madilyn, is "from the tower."

Her name Grace is descriptive of what she became the longer she lived with the family, a gift of Grace from the Lord. The word Grace means "unmerited favor."  The family did not deserve a friend as wonderful as Grace but the Lord knew exactly what we needed in order to grow in Him.

Her second middle name of Christian is descriptive of what the Lord taught the family to be, better Christians who now love their fellow Christians and neighbors more than they did before.  God taught us through her what unconditional love is.  Also the relationship that the family had with her and her with us very much included what is called in the Bible the Fruit of the Spirit which is Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Goodness, Kindness, Gentleness, Faithfulness, and Self Control, against such things there is no law. (Galatians 5: 22-23)  She showed us each of these qualities which often times caused us to show those qualities to her and to others in life with whom we had relationships, especially with each other.  She also added new meaning to the Good Samaritan story where Jesus taught the great importance of loving our neighbor as ourselves. (Luke 10: 25-37).

Maddie Grace was small and loved to be held, especially while sitting in the family easy chair.  If you put your face up to her face she would kiss you like she thought her mission in life was to keep your face clean :-)

She loved to have her back scratched and her belly rubbed. The whole time she lived with the family she was fed mostly human food.  She especially loved the different kinds of creamed meats that come in Gerber baby jars.  Also, if you gave her a bone, she would chew on it until it was all gone. 

When you came home from being out for a while she was there to welcome you or she would be found still sound asleep in one of her many dog beds she had throughout the house.  Maddie Grace slept much of the time which was the complete opposite of some Pugs who are normally hyperactive and "tinkle" where they shouldn't.  But she loved to go outside even in the snow.  She would be walked at least four times a day and she was very well house trained.

Maddie Grace loved people, especially children, and was always a favorite in the neighborhood.  But she did have social issues in her relationships with other dogs or cats until you picked her up of course. Then she calmed right down. She could be antsy at times.

The photograph you see of her is from a few months ago when it was thought that she would go well in front of the animals in the painting by renowned Bucks County painter Edward Hicks (1780-1849). It is a copy of the painting done by Hicks during the period of 1822 to 1825. It is called "The Peaceable Kingdom of the Branch" and the words painted around the border are from Isaiah 11:6 where it is written:

"The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid, and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them."

The painting is one of over sixty different paintings that Hicks did with this same theme of the Peaceable Kingdom, up until his death in 1849.  There is another story that needs to be written of how Maddie Grace and this painting came together.  But what is important now is that the joy that the Winger Family is now celebrating comes from the sure knowledge that she is in a better place much like The Peaceable Kingdom.

As a word of caution here because sound doctrine as well as the beauty of human relationships is taught here, Maddie was a canine. So to say that she now is in some kind of "heaven" may not be doctrinally correct. But what about God's love for ALL His creation? What about Noah's Ark? Is that narrative literally true or just another myth, a good story for children?  What about the promise that God made to Noah? It was not just for him. Scripture proclaims that God made that promise to animals as well AND the successive generations of both Man and Animal.  We should be very discerning with things like an animal heaven or maybe that even animals will be in the Peaceable Kingdom with us throughout eternity.  Maybe there needs to be discussion about this, but right now we're thinking about Maddie Grace :-)

Madilyn Grace Christian Winger will not be forgotten nor how the Lord used her to change the lives around her for the better.  Thank you Lord for Your Compassion and Mercy and Grace. In Jesus Name, Amen.

The family veterinarian coordinated the final procedures that were needed at this time and those procedures were completed on the Saturday after her passing. We have chosen not to keep any of the remains but instead to have a prominent place in our home for the picture that we have shared with you and perhaps some mementos that will be a loving tribute to her and our God Who created her :-)

There is a void in our family right now with the passing of Maddie Grace, a void that she always filled in a very special way. We would ask for your prayers that the Lord would fill that void with whatever or whoever He knows should be there.  We serve a loving God and a risen Christ and we trust Him in this request :-)

Note: If you click on that picture you will be presented with a larger version.

Love ya'll :-)

Allan & Family

2015 Chalet Eagle