Friday, 5 June 2009

The Words of a Dying Man to Jesus Crucified

O Jesus, my Redeemer! who within a few moments wilt be my judge, have mercy upon me before the moment comes when Thou wilt judge me. No, my sins do not terrify me, nor the rigours of Thy judgment, while I see Thee dead upon this cross to save me.

Yet, cease not to comfort me in the agony to which I am come: my enemies would terrify me by saying that there is no salvation for me: Many say unto my soul, there is no salvation for him in his God.1 But I will never cease to trust in Thy goodness, and say, Thou, O Lord! art my lifter up.2 Do Thou comfort me; do Thou make me feel that Thou art my salvation; Say unto my soul, I am thy salvation.3 Oh, let not all those pangs, those insults endured, that blood poured forth by Thee, be lost unto me. “Thou hast redeemed me, dying upon the cross; let not so great labour be in vain.” Especially, I pray Thee, through that bitterness Thou didst feel when Thy blessed soul was separated from Thy most holy body, have mercy upon my soul when it departs from my body.

It is true that through my sins I have continually despised Thee; but now I love Thee above everything, I love Thee more than myself; and I grieve with all my heart for all the offences that I have committed against Thee; I detest them, I hate them above every evil. I see that through the offences I have been guilty of, I have deserved a thousand hells; but the bitter death which Thou hast been willing to endure for me, and the great mercies Thou hast already shown me, make me confidently hope that when I appear before Thee, Thou wilt welcome me with the kiss of peace.

Trusting all in Thy goodness, O my God! I abandon myself into Thy loving arms. In Thee, O Lord! I have hoped: I shall not be confounded forever.4 Through the sins I have committed, I have again and again deserved hell; but I hope in Thy blood, that Thou hast not pardoned me; and I hope that I shall come to heaven to praise Thy mercies forever: The mercies of God I will sing for ever.5

I willingly accept all the pains Thou dost destine for me in purgatory: it is just that the fire should purge away the wrongs I have done Thee. O holy prison, when shall I find myself shut up in thee, secure from being able ever to lose my God! O holy fire, when wilt thou purge away my vileness, and make me worthy to enter the kingdom of the blessed!

O eternal Father! through the merits of the death of Thy Son, Jesus Christ, make me to die in Thy grace, and in Thy love, that I may come to love Thee throughout eternity. I thank Thee for all the graces Thou hast given me through my life, and especially for the great grace of Thy holy faith, and for having caused me to receive, in these my last days, all the holy sacraments. Thou willest that I should die, and I desire to die to please Thee. It is little, O Jesus, my Saviour! that I should die for Thee, who hast died for me. I am satisfied to say to Thee, with St. Francis, “Let me die for love of Thee, who hast vouchsafed to die for love of me.”

I receive death with peace, and also the pains that I must endure so long as I breathe; give me strength to suffer with a perfect conformity to Thy will. I offer them all to Thy glory, uniting them to the pains that Thou didst suffer in Thy Passion. O eternal Father! I sacrifice to Thee my life, and all my being; and I pray Thee to accept this my sacrifice, through the merits of the great sacrifice that Jesus Thy Son offered up of him self upon the cross.

O Mother of God, and my Mother Mary! thou hast obtained many graces from God for me during my life; I thank thee with all my heart. Oh, abandon me not in this hour of my death, in which I have greater need of thy prayers. Pray to Jesus for me, and increase thy prayers; obtain for me sorrow for my sins, and more love for God, that I may come to love him forever, in company with Thee, and with all my powers, in heaven. “In thee, O Lady! I have hoped: I shall not be confounded forever.” Mary, my hope, in thee I trust.

1“Multi dicunt animæ meæ: Non est salus ipsi in Deo ejus.” -- Ps. iii. 3.

2“Tu autem, Domine, susceptor meus es.” -- Ps. iii. 4.

3“Die animæ meæ: Salus tua ego sum.” -- Ps. xxxiv. 3.

4“In te, Domine, speravi; non confundar in aeternum.” -- Ps. xxx. 2.

5“Misericordias Domini in aeternum cantabo.” -- Ps. lxxxviii. 2.

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