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Monday, December 7, 2020

You Know Not the Day or the Hour! Trust in God's Providence and Pray for a Priest to Be There at the Hour of Death!

    Priest Administers Last Rites to Driver After Deadly Car Crash

Yesterday at Mass, Father told a true story about a priest called by God to minister to a dying young woman. The priest had spent two weeks with his family in a mountain cabin located above a city. At the end of the break, he travelled down the mountain and entered the city but remembered that he had left his alb at the cabin. So he turned around and travelled back up the mountain (not a short interruption), secured his alb and headed home again. 

When he reached the bottom of the mountain the second time, a terrible traffic jam greeted him. Emergency vehicles, sirens, and flashing lights marked the scene. Thinking he might be able to help, Father made his way to the point of the accident and found a seriously injured young woman near death lying on the ground. She couldn't speak, but when he asked if she was Catholic, she nodded weakly. He asked her if she was sorry for her sins and she nodded again. He gave her absolution and the apostolic blessing and she died a few minutes later in his arms.

The priest decided to attend the funeral to talk to the family. When he spoke to the young girl's mother and told her of his intervention at the scene, she fainted. After she recovered, she told the priest that the week since her daughter's death had been the blackest of her life. She loved her daughter dearly, but knew that her spiritual life was a wreck. Involved with bad friends, she sank into a life of serious mortal sin. Her mother feared that was the state in which she died -- unrepentant and, perhaps, lost to her forever. Learning that, in his Providence, God sent salvation to her daughter in the form of a priest transformed her agony into joy.

How many times has an inconvenience or problem in your life turned out to be a blessing? I can think of many in mine. Did a traffic backup perhaps save you from an accident? Did a heartbreaking relationship breakup become the door that led to true happiness?

How many moms and grandmas pray for their lost sheep as they watch them running pell-mell toward the abyss. John Bosco in his visions often saw boys in his oratory who were in danger of hell. He responded by giving sermons warning of the danger without identifying the sinful boys, urging all his spiritual sons to go to confession. We need to pray for those teetering on the brink that, even at the 11th hour, God will give them the grace of conversion, a final choice between the rebel's, "I will not serve!" and Mary's, "Let it be done unto me according to Thy word."

We all face challenges in life. How we respond to them can make us angry and bitter or stronger and more resilient. Each of us chooses. If we can say, "Thanks be to God!" for everything, we will live a life full of joy. The saints knew that secret and we can surely learn and practice it. And be sure to thank God for our priests and pray that one will be there to anoint you before you die.

Thy will be done in all things, Lord. Amen!


rohrbachs said...

Which is why my tagline is "to stay confessed is to stay safe".

Unknown said...

This is the most blessed example of God's tender love I have ever read. I can't stop weeping. How wonderfully loving is our GOD.