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On God's Time
Bonnie Lewis waited for God to select the right time for her to pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy for a dying friend. She did, and he enjoyed a peaceful death.
By Bonnie Lewis (Oct 23, 2010)
My first experience of praying the Chaplet of The Divine Mercy with a dying person was a little frightening. Here is the reason I felt this way.
My friend's husband, who is not Catholic, was dying of cancer. Every time we got together, he would say that he was going to hell. Frank (not his real name) believed this with all his heart, and he would repeat this over and over again each time I saw him.
I couldn't understand why Frank would say this, because he was a Christian who believed in God. He and his wife went to church on Sundays, and she was in an ecumenical Bible study class with me.
When I got a call from his wife that he was dying and would probably not survive the weekend, you can imagine how troubled and concerned I was for the salvation of Frank's soul. She told me that her children were all coming in to be with their father in his last moments.
I asked if I could come to the hospital and pray with Frank, but she said no. She just wanted her family there, but she appreciated my thoughtfulness and prayers. I felt disappointed, since I was prepared to say the Chaplet of Divine Mercy and the Rosary for him. I knew, however, that these prayers would be just as helpful if I said them at home.
The weekend passed, and I didn't hear anything from my friend. When I finally received a call from her, I was surprised to hear that her husband was still alive. The children had gone back to their homes, and she said she wanted me to come to the hospital as soon as possible. She said she was scared, because Frank had become agitated. He was yelling, saying terrible things. I went to the hospital, bringing my rosary beads and holy water. I prayed to the Holy Spirit to give me courage.
When I walked into the room, Frank was tossing and turning, yelling sounds that came out his throat with an eerie, guttural quality. I asked his wife if I could pray a Rosary for him as well as the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. She said yes and then left to get something to eat.
We were now alone. I immediately blessed Frank with holy water, asking protection for him from St. Michael, Our Blessed Mother, and his guardian angel. I had time to pray the Rosary and the chaplet before his wife returned.
Then I got the thought to start singing Christian songs, so I began "Amazing Grace" and "Jesus Loves Me." To my surprise, Frank stopped his horrible noises and began singing along with me. His eyes were closed. When I left to go home, he seemed to be resting quietly.
Frank died a day and a half later, and I was told he died a peaceful death. I believe God had used me as His instrument exactly when the timing was right and on behalf of a dying person most in need of His mercy.
Learn more about the Chaplet of The Divine Mercy.
Bonnie Lewis lives in Arcadia, Ohio.