The Four Last Things Extract from The four last things : death, judgment, hell, Heaven by Martin, von Cochem Nihil Obstat: Thomas L Kinkead, Censor Liborium Imprimatur: Michael Augustine --- Archbishop of New York How painful, how terrible, how awful death will be for us in our last agony of death. How severe a conflict when Hell is allowed to tempt us with doubts and feel us with despair, so that we may lose our soul's when we come into our last moments! No one knows with certainty where they will go after death, or how we will stand in the Day of Judgment. What a terrible was the soul goes through in it's last agony, and if some people you say pass away most peacefully, this is because nature, exhausted by suffering, has no longer the force to struggle with death or to show Satan's final assaults on the soul or that Satan already has assurance that the soul is his. But for a Catholic and other soul's who may possibly be willing to convert to the true Faith on their death bed, Jesus allows a final test not to condemn man, but in order that mankind might at least in some measure understand how terrible was the death He died for us was. He ordained that we, at our dissolution, should taste something of the bitterness of His death, and let us gain more merit in Heaven if we are able to overcome satan's last assaults and claim final victory. Pope St. Gregory wrote " Christ's conflict with death represents our last conflict, teaching us that the agony of death is the keenest agony that man has ever felt or will ever feel. Christ wants all men in their final moments to suffer the like pains which He suffered for us in His last agony. How severe a conflict is before us and what torments await us at our last hour! The very thought of our eternity which will be permanent will cause the soul much SUFFERING having Heaven or Hell before us, and the unrelenting assaults of Satan. Like stated before with regards to the assaults of Satan, remember once again that the all-just God permits him to have great power to assail us at the hour of death ; not indeed for our perdition, but for our probation and victory. Before expiring the true Christian has yet to prove that nothing can avail to make him forsake his God. For this reason the evil enemy employs all the power he has received, and brings all his forces to bear upon a man when he is dying, in the hope of causing him to sin, and thrusting him down to hell. While Satan is already allowed from the moment we are born to attack us fiercely, and neglects no means whereby he may deceive us, those persecutions all nothing in comparison with the final onslaught with which he wipl endeavor to overcome us at our last agony. At that moment and due to his inexhaustible hatred for God and man, he raves and rages, like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. . Apocalypse (xii. 12) : "Woe to the earth and to the sea, because the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, knowing that he hath but a short time." These words bear a special application for the dying, against whom the devil conceives an eternal hatred for, and whom he makes every effort to claim in our last moment's. For he knows full well that if he does not get our soul then, he will never again have the chance of doing so. St. Gregory says on this point : " Consider well how terrible is the hour of death, and how appalling the remembrance of our evil deeds will be at that time. For the spirits of darkness will recall all the harm they have done to us, and remind us of the sins which we have committed at their instigation. They will not go to the death bed of the godless only, but they will be present with the elect, striving to discover something sinful whereof to accuse them. Alas ! how will it fare with us hapless mortals in that hour, and what can we say for ourselves, seeing how innumerable are the sins to be laid to our charge? What can we answer to our adversaries, when they place all our sins before us, with the object of reducing us to despair? " . The evil spirits will tempt their victim's at the moment of death on various points, but especially in regard to the sins into which we has most frequently fallen. If during our lifetime we have cherished hatred towards any one, they will conjure up before our dying eyes the image of that person, rehearsing all they did to injure him, in order to revive the flame of hate towards that enemy, or kindle it anew. Or if we have transgressed against purity, they will show us the accomplice of our sin, and strive to awaken the guilty carnal passion and false love we opnce felt for that individual. If we have been troubled with doubts concerning the Faith, they recall to our mind the article of belief which we had difficulty in accepting, representing it to us as untrue, whereby we deny the Holy Spirit Himself. If we have a tendency to despair, the evil spirits encourage it, that they may rob us of any hope of salvation. The person who has sinned through pride, and boasted of their good works, they seek to ensnare by flattery, assuring that they stand high in the favor of God, and all they have done cannot fail to secure them their place in Heaven. Again, if in our lifetime if we have been given to impatience, allowing ourself to be angry and irritated by every trifle, they make our illness appear most undeserved to us that that we may become impatient, and rebel against God for having sent upon us so painful a malady, doubting His Mercy. Or if we have been tepid and indevout, without fervor in prayer or perseverance in our religious exercises they try to maintain in our soul this state of apathy, suggesting to us that our physical weakness is too great even to allow us to join in the prayers of our friends. Also they tempt those who have led a godless life, and repeatedly fallen into mortal sin, to despair, representing their transgressions to be so great as to be past forgiveness. In a word, the spirits of evil assail our soul's at the moment of death most fiercely at this most vulnerable point, just as a skilful general will storm a fortress on the side where he perceives the ramparts to be weakest. . But the devils do not confine themselves to tempting us in regard to our chief failings and predominant faults ; they frequently tempt us to sins of which we have not even been guilty. For these devil's spare no pains to deceive the dying, and if they fail in one way, they attempt to succeed in another. These temptations are of no ordinary character. They are sometimes so violent that it is impossible for weak mortals to resist them without supernatural assistance. If it is all that any one in good health can do to withstand the assaults of the devil, and even such a one is more often overcome by them, how difficult must it be for one who is weak by sickness to struggle against foes so formidable! On this point a pious writer says : " Unless the dying person has, previous to their last illness, armed themselves against these attacks, and is accustomed to do battle with their spiritual adversaries, they stands a poor chance of prevailing against them at the moment of death. If we do so, it will be only through the assistance of almighty God, of our Blessed Lady, of our guardian angel, or of one of the saints. For our merciful God and His angels and blessed saints do not abandon the Christian in the hour of our direst need ; they hasten to help, that is, provided we are deserving of their aid." . Another horrifying tactic is the terrible appearance of the evil spirits which makes death more unbearable and alarming to us. It is the opinion of many of the Church Fathers, that every one, when expiring, sees the evil enemy in all his horror at the moment of drawing their last breath, if not a while before. How terrifying this sight is, and with what terror it must inspire in the dying, it exceeds the power of words to declare. . It is related of Brother Giles that one day, when he was praying in his cell, the devil appeared to him in so frightful a shape, that the Brother lost the power of speech, and thought his last hour had come. As his lips could not utter a sound, he raised his heart in humble supplication to God, and the apparition vanished. Afterwards, when relating what had befallen him to his brother-monks, he trembled from head to foot as he described the hideous aspect of -the adversary of mankind. Then going to St. Francis of Assisi, he asked him this question : " Father, have you ever seen anything in this world the sight of which was so horrible that it was enough to kill one to behold it ? " And the Saint replied : . "I have indeed seen such a thing ; it is none other than the devil, whose aspect is so loathsome that no one could gaze upon it even for a short time and live, unless God specially enabled him to do so." . St. Cyril also, writing to St. Augustine, says that one of the three men who were raised from the dead told him : " As the hour of my departure drew nigh, a multitude of devils, countless in number, came and stood about me. Their forms were more horrible than anything imagination can conceive. One would rather be burnt in the fire than be compelled to look upon them. These demons ranged themselves around me, and reproached me with all the misdeeds I had ever done, thinking to drive me to despair. And in fact I should have given way before them, had not God in His mercy come to my succor." . Jesus speaking to Saint Catherine of Siena of satan said to her "The sight of the Devil revive these wretched ones to torments, because in seeing him they know themselves more, that is to say, they know that, by their own sin, they have made themselves worthy of him. And so the worm of Conscience gnaws more and more, and the fire of this Conscience never ceases to burn. And the sight is more painful to them, because they see him in his own form, which is so horrible that the heart of man could not imagine it and if you remember well, you know that I showed him to you in his own form for a little space of time, hardly a moment, and you chose (after you had returned to yourself) rather to walk on a road of fire, even until the Day of Judgment, than to see him again. With all this that you have seen, even you do not know well how horrible he is"... . Saint Veronica Giuliani describing Satan, Here it is sitting, ghastly, horrible. O God! What can describe such horror! More horrible and ugly than all other demons!!!! . Saint Frances of Rome said this when she saw satan, "The most horrible site that ever was or will be -- the great devil chained down in the middle of hell." "Already you hear the rattling of the tremendous chains of the great monster! See! there he is -- the most horrible and abominable of all monsters, the devil. His size is immense! He shall fill the length of the land. He was sitting on a long beam which passed through the middle of hell. His feet went down into the lowest depths of hell. They rested on the floor of hell. They were fastened with great, heavy iron chains. These chains were fixed to an immense ring in the floor. His hands were chained up to the roof. One of his hands was turned up against heaven, to blaspheme God and the saints who dwell there. His other hand was stretched out, pointing to the lowest hell. His tremendous and horrible head was raised up on high, and touched the roof. From his head came two immense horns. I saw another beast having two horns. From each horn smaller horns, without number, branched out, which, like chimneys, sent out fire and smoke. His enormous mouth was wide open. Out of it there was running a river of fire, which gave no light, but a most abominable smell. Flame cometh out of his mouth. Round his neck was a collar of red hot iron. A burning chain tied him round the middle. The uglinesses of his face was such that no man or devil could bear it. It was the most deformed, horrible, frightful thing that ever was or will be. His great fierce eyes were filled with pride and anger, and rage, and spite, and blood, and fire, and savage cruelty. There was something else in those eyes for which there is no name, but it made those on whom the devil's eyes were fixed tremble and shake as if they were dying." . Here we have the testimonials of them who have actually seen how frightful the appearance of the evil enemy is, and who declares that nothing can be more horrible than the site of the devil. . What can be done about this since we all will have to face the same battle in our final moments? We must turn to prayer now and ready ourselves for a good death and invoke our Blessed Mother the Virgin Mary to appear before us with the Saint's and Angels to turn the horror of death into the Sweetness of Eternal Life in our Lord Jesus Heavenly Kingdom. . PRAYERS FOR PERSEVERANCE IN DEATH Flower Prayers of St. Gertrude To Jesus . Hail! Vivifying Gem of Divine Nobility! Hail, Most Loving Jesus, Unfading Flower of Human Dignity! Thou art my Sovereign and only Good.. Promise: After reciting this prayer, St. Gertrude was visited by Our Lord, who told her: "Whosover salutes Me, as you have done, in reparation for the blasphemies and outrages which are poured forth on me throughout the world, when he is tempted at the hour of his death and accused by the demon, will be consoled by me. . HAIL, White Lily, of the ever-peaceful and glorious Trinity! Hail, Vermilion Rose, the delight of Heaven, of whom the King of Heaven was born and by whose milk He was nourished! Do thou feed our souls with the effusions of your divine influences. .Version taken from Herald of Divine Love . Hail O radiant Lily of the ever-peaceful Trinity! O resplendent rose of Heavenly Charm! Hail paradise of delights, O most beautiful habitation of God!. Promise: During an apparition of the Blessed Mother, St. Gertrude noted that the Holy Trinity was depicted under the form of a white lily with three petals. The Blessed Mother made it known that she would exert her influence with the Holy Trinity on behalf of those who saluted her as the White Lily of the Trinity and the Vermilion Rose of Heaven. She then added: "I will appear at the hour of death to those who salute me thus, in such glory that they will anticipate the very joys of Heaven." PRAYER TO SAINT JOSEPH FOR A HAPPY DEATH. O Glorious St. Joseph, behold I choose thee today for my special patron in life and at the hour of my death. Preserve and increase in me the spirit of prayer and fervor in the service of God. Remove far from me every kind of sin; obtain for me that my death may not come upon me unawares, but that I may have time to confess my sins sacramentally and to bewail them with a most perfect understanding and a most sincere and perfect contrition, in order that I may breathe forth my soul into the hands of Jesus and Mary. Amen Thirty Days' Prayer to Saint Joseph to Obtain a Happy Death and Other Good Intentions Chaste Spouse of the ever Immaculate and Blessed Virgin Mary, and Foster Father of Jesus Christ EVER blessed and glorious Joseph, kind and indulgent father, and compassionate friend of all in sorrow, through that bitter grief with which thy heart was saturated when thou didst behold the sufferings of the Infant Saviour, and in thy prophetic view didst contemplate His most ignominious Passion and death, take pity, I beseech thee, on my poverty and necessities; counsel me in my doubts, and console me in all my anxieties. Thou art the good father and protector of orphans, the advocate of the defenseless, the patron of those who are in need and desolation. Do not, then, disregard the petition of thy poor child; my sins have drawn down upon me the just displeasure of my God, and hence I am surrounded with sorrows. To thee, O amiable guardian of the poor neglected family of Nazareth, do I fly for shelter and protection. Listen then, I entreat of thee, with a father's solicitude, to the earnest prayer of thy poor supplicant! and obtain for me the objects of my petition. I ask it, by the infinite mercy of the eternal Son of God, which induced Him to assume our nature, and be born into this world of sorrow. I ask it by the grief which filled thy heart when, ignorant of the mystery wrought in thy Immaculate Spouse, thou didst fear thou shouldst be separated from her. I ask it by that weariness, solicitude and suffering which thou didst endure when thou soughtest in vain at the inns of Bethlehem a shelter for the Sacred Virgin, and a birthplace for the Infant God, and when, being everywhere refused, thou wert obliged to consent that the Queen of Heaven should give birth to the world's Redeemer in a wretched stable. I ask it by that most sad and painful duty imposed on thee, when, the Divine Child being eight days old, thou wert obliged to inflict a deep wound on His tender Body, and thus be the first to make flow that Sacred Blood which was to wash away the sins of the world. I ask it by the sweetness and power of that sacred Name, Jesus, which thou didst confer on the adorable Infant. I ask it by that mortal anguish inflicted on thee by the prophecy of. holy Simeon, which declared the Child Jesus and His holy Mother the future victims of their love and our sins. I ask it through that sorrow and anguish which filled thy soul when the Angel declared to thee that the life of the Child Jesus was sought by His enemies, from whose impious designs thou wert obliged to fly with Him and His blessed Mother into Egypt. I ask it by all the pains, fatigues and toils of that long and perilous pilgrimage. I ask it by all the sorrows thou didst endure, when in Egypt thou wert not able, even by the sweat of thy brow, to procure poor food and clothing for thy most poor family. I ask it by all the grief thou didst feel each time the Divine Child asked for a morsel of bread, and thou hadst it not to give Him. I ask it by all thy solicitude to preserve the sacred Child and the Immaculate Mary, during thy second journey, when thou wert ordered to return to thy native country. I ask it by thy peaceful dwelling in Nazareth, in which so many joys and sorrows were mingled. I ask it by the extreme affliction in being deprived three days of the company of the adorable Child. I ask it by thy joy at finding Him in the Temple and by the ineffable consolation imparted to thee in the cottage of Nazareth, with the company and society of the little Jesus. I ask it by that wonderful condescension by which He subjected Himself to thy will. I ask it through that dolorous view, continually in thy mind, of all thy Jesus was to suffer. I ask it by that painful contemplation, which made thee foresee the Divine little hands and feet, now so active in serving thee, one day to be pierced with cruel nails; that head which rested gently on thy bosom, crowned with sharp thorns; that delicate body, which thou didst tenderly fold in thy mantle and press to thy heart, stripped and extended on a cross. I ask it by that heroic sacrifice of thy will and best affection, by which thou didst offer up to the eternal Father the last awful moment, when the Man-God was to expire for our salvation. I ask it by that perfect love and conformity with which thou didst receive the Divine order to depart from this life, and from the company of Jesus and Mary. I ask it by that exceeding great joy which filled thy soul when the Redeemer of the world, triumphant over death and hell, entered into the, possession of His kingdom, and conducted thee also into it with especial honors. I ask it through Mary's glorious assumption, and through that interminable bliss which, with her, thou wilt eternally derive from the presence of God. O good Father! I beseech thee by all thy sufferings, sorrows and joys, to hear me and to obtain the grant of my earnest petitions. (Here name them or reflect on them) Obtain for all those who have asked thy prayers all that is useful to them in the designs of God; and finally, my dear protector, be thou with me and all who are dear to me, in our last moments, that we may eternally chant the praises of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Amen. “Since we all must die, we should cherish a special devotion to St. Joseph, that he may obtain for us a happy death. All Christians regard him as the advocate of the dying who had honored him during their life, and they do so for three reasons: “First, because Jesus Christ loved him not only as a friend, but as a father, and on this account his mediation is far more efficacious than that of any other Saint. “Second, because St. Joseph has obtained special power against the evil spirits, who tempt us with redoubled vigor at the hour of death. “Third, the assistance given St. Joseph at his death by Jesus and Mary obtained for him the right to secure a holy and peaceful death for his servants. Hence, if they invoke him at the hour of death he will not only help them, but he will also obtain for them the assistance of Jesus and Mary.” (St. Alphonsus Liguori) Signal Graces obtained through St. Joseph's intercession From Mary of Agreda's City of God, we learn the following consoling revelations: • "First, those who invoke him shall obtain from God, by his intercession, the gift of chastity, and shall not be conquered by the temptation of the senses; • Secondly, they shall receive particular graces to deliver them from sin; • Thirdly, they shall obtain a true devotion to the Blessed Virgin; • Fourthly, they shall have a good and happy death, and in that all-decisive moment be defended against the assaults of Satan; • Fifthly, they shall be delivered when expedient for them, from bodily sufferings, and shall find help in their afflictions; • Sixthly, if married, they shall be blessed with offspring; • Seventhly, the demons shall have extreme dread of the glorious name of St. Joseph. With so many graces to be obtained through his powerful intercession, let us not tarry nor hesitate in asking humbly for the protection and aid of dear St. Joseph, Terror of demons! . WORDS OF THE QUEEN. (The Virgin Mary speaks to Sister Mary of Agreda, Spain.)My daughter, although thou hast described my spouse, saint Joseph, as the most noble among the princes and saints of the heavenly Jerusalem; yet neither canst thou properly manifest his eminent sanctity, nor can any of the mortals know it fully before they arrive at the vision of the Divinity. Then all of them will be filled with wonder and praise as the Lord will make them capable of understanding this sacrament. On the last day, when all men shall be judged, the damned will bitterly bewail their sins, which prevented them from appreciating this powerful means of their salvation, and availing themselves, as they easily could have, of this intercessor to gain the friendship of the just Judge. The whole human race has much undervalued the privileges and prerogatives conceded to my blessed spouse and they know not what his intercession with God is able to do. I assure thee, my dearest, that he is one of the greatly favored personages in the divine presence and has immense power to stay the arms of divine vengeance. I desire that thou be very thankful to the divine condescension for vouchsafing thee so much light and knowledge regarding this mystery, and also for the favor which I am doing thee therein. From now on, during the rest of thy mortal life, see that thou advance in devotion and in hearty love toward my spouse, and that thou bless the Lord for thus having favored him with such high privileges and for having rejoiced me so much in the knowledge of all his excellences. In all thy necessities thou must avail thyself of his intercession. Thou shouldst induce many to venerate him and see that thy own religious distinguish themselves in their devotion. That which my spouse asks of the Lord in heaven is granted upon the earth and on his intercession depend many and extraordinary favors for men, if they do not make themselves unworthy of receiving them. All these privileges were to be a reward for the amiable perfection of this wonderful saint and for his great virtues; for divine clemency is favorably drawn forth by them and looks upon saint Joseph with generous liberality, ready to shower down its marvelous mercies upon all those who avail themselves of his intercession. Prayer to Saint Michael For Assistance at the Hour of Death Glorious Archangel St. Michael, by thy protection, enable my soul to be so enriched by grace as to be worthy to be presented by thee to Jesus Christ, my Judge, at the hour of my death. As thou hast conquered Satan and expelled him from Heaven, conquer him again, and drive him far away from me at the hour of my death. O Mary, Queen of Heaven, procure for me the assistance of St. Michael at the hour of my death! Amen. PRAYER FOR A HAPPY DEATH TO OUR LADY OF SORROWS O Mother of Sorrows, by the anguish and love with which Thou didst stand beside the Cross of Jesus, stand by me in my last agony. To Thy maternal Heart I commend the three last hours of my life. Offer these hours to the Eternal Father in union with the agony of our dearest Lord. Offer frequently to the Eternal Father, in atonement for my sins, the Precious Blood of Jesus, mingled with Thy tears on Calvary, to obtain for me the grace to receive Holy Communion with most perfect love and contrition before my death, and to breathe forth my soul in the actual presence of Jesus. Dearest Mother, when the moment of my death has come, present me as Thy child to Jesus; say to Him in my behalf: "Son, forgive him, for he knew not what he did. Receive him this day into Thy kingdom." Prayers in Honor of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary Pope Pius VII approved this series of prayers in honor of the Seven Sorrows of Mary for daily meditation in 1815: O God, come to my assistance; O Lord, make haste to help me. Glory be to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. 1. I grieve for Thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the affliction of Thy tender heart at the prophecy of the holy and aged Simeon. Dear Mother, by Thy heart so afflicted, obtain for me the virtue of humility and the gift of the holy fear of God. Hail Mary… 2. I grieve for Thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the anguish of Thy most affectionate heart during the flight into Egypt and Thy sojourn there. Dear Mother, by Thy heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of generosity, especially toward the poor, and the gift of piety. Hail Mary… 3. I grieve for Thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in those anxieties which tried Thy troubled heart at the loss of Thy dear Jesus in the Temple. Dear Mother, by Thy heart so full of anguish, obtain for me the virtue of chastity and the gift of knowledge. Hail Mary… 4. I grieve for Thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the consternation of Thy heart at meeting Jesus as He carried His Cross. Dear Mother, by Thy heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of patience and the gift of fortitude. Hail Mary… 5. I grieve for Thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the martyrdom which Thy generous heart endured in standing near Jesus in His agony on the Cross. Dear Mother, by Thy afflicted heart obtain for me the virtue of temperance and the gift of counsel. Hail Mary… 6. I grieve for Ther, O Mary most sorrowful, in the wounding of Thy compassionate heart, when the side of Jesus was struck by the lance before His Body was removed from the Cross. Dear Mother, by Thy heart thus transfixed, obtain for me the virtue of fraternal charity and the gift of understanding. Hail Mary… 7. I grieve for Thee, O Mary most sorrowful, for the pangs that wrenched Thy most loving heart at the burial of Jesus. Dear Mother, by Thy heart sunk in the bitterness of desolation, obtain for me the virtue of diligence and the gift of wisdom. Hail Mary… Let Us Pray: Let intercession be made for us, we beseech The, O Lord Jesus Christ, now and at the hour of our death, before the throne of Thy mercy, by the Blessed Virgin Mary, Thy Mother, whose most holy soul was pierced by a sword of sorrow in the hour of Thy bitter Passion. Through Thee, O Jesus Christ, Savior of the world, Who with the Father and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns world without end. Amen. The Blessed Virgin Mary revealed to St. Bridget of Sweden (1303-1373) that seven graces are granted to the souls who honor her daily by saying seven Hail Mary's and meditating on her tears and dolors. 1) I will grant peace to their families. 2) They will be enlightened about the divine mysteries. 3) I will console them in their pains and I will accompany them in their work. 4) I will give them as much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable will of my divine Son or the sanctification of their souls. 5) I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect them at every instant of their lives. 6) I will visibly help them at the moment of their death, they will see the face of their Mother. 7) I have obtained (This Grace) from my divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and dolors, will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness since all their sins will be forgiven and my Son and I will be their eternal consolation and joy. . St. Alphonsus Liguori testifies to complementary revelations given by Our Lord to St. Elizabeth of Hungary (1207-1231) where Jesus further promises four special graces to those dedicated to the sufferings of the co-redeeming Mother: 1. That those who before death invoke the Blessed Mother in the name of her sorrows, should obtain true repentance of all their sins. 2. That He would protect in their tribulations all who remember this devotion, and that He would protect them especially at the hour of death. 3. That He would impress upon their minds the remembrance of His Passion, and that they should have their reward for it in Heaven. 4. That He would commit such devout clients to the hands of Mary, so that she might obtain for these souls all the graces she wanted to lavish upon them. . Our Lord once said to Blessed Veronica of Binasco: "My daughter, the tears which you shed in compassion for My sufferings are pleasing to Me, but bear in mind that on account of My infinite love for My Mother, the tears you shed in compassion for her sufferings are still more precious." PRAYER IN HONOR OF SAINT BENEDICT FOR A HAPPY DEATH. Once St. Gertrude reminded Sainy Benedict who she had the Heavenly Grace to converse with, of his glorious death, thereupon the holy Patriarch gave her the following assurance : "All who invoke me, remembering the glorious death with which God honored me, shall be assisted by me at their death with such fidelity, that I will place myself where I see the enemy most disposed to attack them. Thus being fortified by my presence, they will escape the snares, which he lays for them and depart happily and peacefully to the enjoyment of the Eternal Beatitude. . 0 Holy Father, Blessed by God both in Grace and in name, who, whilst standing in prayer with Thy hands raised to Heaven, didst most happily yield Thy Angelic Spirit into the hands of Thy Creator; and hast promised zealously to defend against all the snares of the enemy, in the last struggle of death, those who should daily remind Thee of Thy glorious departure and Thy Heavenly joys; protect me, I beseech Thee, O glorious Father, this day and every day, by Thy Holy Blessing; that I may never be separated from our Blessed Lord, from the society of Thyself, and of all the Blessed. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen. (300 days' indulgence. Pope Pius IX., May 14, 1861) . THE DAILY ROSARY The Fifteen Promises of Mary to Christians Who Recite the Rosary Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces. I promise my special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary. The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies. It will cause virtue and good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it will withdraw the hearts of men from the love of the world and its vanities, and will lift them to the desire of eternal things. Oh, that souls would sanctify themselves by this means. The soul which recommends itself to me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish. Whoever shall recite the Rosary devoutly, applying himself to the consideration of its sacred mysteries shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise him in His justice, he shall not perish by an unprovided death; if he be just he shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life. Whoever shall have a true devotion for the Rosary shall not die without the sacraments of the Church. Those who are faithful to recite the Rosary shall have during their life and at their death the light of God and the plentitude of His graces; at the moment of death they shall participate in the merits of the saints in paradise. I shall deliver from purgatory those who have been devoted to the Rosary. The faithful children of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in heaven. You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary. All those who propagate the holy Rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities. I have obtained from my Divine Son that all the advocates of the Rosary shall have for intercessors the entire celestial court during their life and at the hour of death. All who recite the Rosary are my sons, and brothers of my only Son Jesus Christ. Devotion of my Rosary is a great sign of predestination. (Given to St. Dominic and Blessed Alan) Imprimatur: Patrick J. Hayes, D.D. Archbishop of New York Even if you are on the brink of damnation, even if you have one foot in hell, even if you have sold your soul to the devil as sorcerers do who practice black magic, and even if you are a heretic as obstinate as a devil, sooner or later you will be converted and will amend your life and will save your soul, IF YOU SAY THE HOLY ROSARY devoutly every day until death for the purpose of knowing the truth and obtaining contrition and pardon for your sins-Saint Louis de Montfort. “You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the Rosary.” Our Lady to Blessed Alan de la Roche “If you persevere in reciting the Rosary, this will be a most probable sign of your eternal salvation.” “The greatest method of praying is to pray the Rosary.” Saint Francis de Sales “The Most Holy Virgin in these last times in which we live has given a new efficacy to the recitation of the Rosary to such an extent that there is no problem, no matter how difficult it is, whether temporal or above all spiritual, in the personal life of each one of us, of our families…that cannot be solved by the Rosary. There is no problem, I tell you, no matter how difficult it is, that we cannot resolve by the prayer of the Holy Rosary.” Sister Lucia dos Santos, Fatima seer. One day, St. Dominic prayed to Our Lady that she would force the devils who possessed a man to reveal the truth about devotion to her. The devils were forced by Our Lady to reveal: Listen to what the devils said, "Now that we are forced to speak we must also tell you this: Nobody who perseveres in saying the Rosary will be damned, because she obtains for her servants the grace of true contrition for their sins and by means of this they obtain God's forgiveness and mercy." THE THREE HAIL MARYS DEVOTION One of the greatest means of salvation and one of the surest signs of predestination, is unquestionably, the devotion to the Most Blessed Virgin. All the holy doctors of the Church are unanimous in saying with St. Alphonsus of Liguori: "A devout servant of Mary shall never perish." The chief thing is to persevere faithfully till death in this devotion. Numerous examples show how agreeable the three Hail Marys Devotion is to the Divine Mother and what special graces it draws, during life and at the hour of death, on those who never omit it for a single day. This practice was revealed to St. Melchtilde (13th century) while she was beseeching Our Blessed Mother to assist her in her hour of death. Our Lady appeared to her and said: "I will, certainly. But I also want you to say three special Hail Marys to me every day. "The first will be in honor of God the Father, Whose omnipotence raised my soul so high above every other creature that after God I have the greatest power in heaven and on earth. In the hour of your death I will use that power of God the Father to keep any hostile power far from you. "The second Hail Mary will be said in honor of the Son of God Who communicated His inscrutable wisdom to me. In the hour of your death I will fill your soul with the light of that wisdom so that all the darkness of ignorance and error will be dispelled. "The third Hail Mary will be in honor of God the Holy Ghost Who filled my soul with the sweetness of His love and tenderness and mercy. In your last hour I will then change the bitterness of death into divine sweetness and delight." Our Blessed Mother also revealed to St. Gertrude the Great: "To any soul who faithfully prays the Three Hail Marys, I will appear at the hour of death in a splendor so extraordinary that it will fill the soul with heavenly consolation." St. Leonard of Port Maurice, the celebrated missionary, had the Three Hail Marys recited morning and evening in honor of Mary Immaculate, to obtain the grace of avoiding all mortal sins during the day or night; moreover he promised in a special manner eternal salvation to all those who proved constantly faithful to this practice. He gave this devotion of Three Hail Marys as a penance in the confessional, especially for those who were struggling with sins of impurity. Practice: Recite morning and evening, three Hail Marys in honor of the three great privileges bestowed upon Our Blessed Mother by the most Blessed Trinity with this invocation at the end: for the morning: "O my Mother preserve me from mortal sin during this day." For the evening: "O my Mother preserve me from mortal sin during this night." (Pope St. Pius X gave his Apostolic Blessing to this practice and the devotion was raised to an Archconfraternity by Pope Benedict XV.) The Hail Mary: Hail Mary, full of grace; the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our deth. Amen The Four Last Things ..