True Catholic News

How to Assist the Dying when a Priest is not Present

Source: "Catholic Practice at Church and at Home
The Parishioner's Little Rule Book, a Guide for Catholics
in the External Practice of Their Holy Religion", pp. 104-106,
By Fr. Alexander Klauder, Angel Guardian Press, 1898, Imp.

As it is not always possible for a Priest 
to be *present at the actual moment of 
death, especially in large parishes, and 
more especially where the parish covers a 
large territory, the faithful should them- 
selves endeavor to assist their dying 
brethren after the Priest has administered 
the last sacraments.

*This is most true during this, the Apostasy. -Editor of TCW

When they see that the patient's end is approaching, they should light a *blessed candle and assist him [if patient doesn't have a highly contagious disease -TCW] to hold it in his hand, at least during the regular prayers for the dying and in the actual moment of death. If the agony should last 
considerable time, some one else may hold 
the candle near by and keep it in readiness.

My Jesus Mercy! (100 Days Indulgence)

(*"Blessed Candles. Every Catholic household 
should be provided with one or more blessed 
candles. These candles should be of pure bees'  
wax. Other kinds, such as parafine, spermacetior 
or tallow candles will not answer the purpose of 
candles prescribed by the Church. ... Have a pair 
of candlesticks for them, so as to be able to light
them at once when they are needed. 

They are needed particularly when Holy
Communion or the last sacraments are
administered, as well as at a funeral. It 
is well to light them also in times of great
distress, as in sudden dangerous sickness,
on occasions of violent storms, fires, floods,
and the like; as the candles convey a blessing
to the house." -Fr. Klauder, pp. 209-210)

Some one should read the prayers for 
the dying from the prayer-book as well 
as other prayers after them, if the death- 
agony should continue.

If the agony should last very long, 
these and other prayers may be repeated 
from time to time.

The person holding the candle or 
kneeling close to the dying person should, 
from time to time, and especially at the 
last moment, repeat short and fervent in- 
vocations to him, such as: "My Jesus, 
mercy." "My Jesus, forgive me my 
sins; I am heartily sorry for them." 
"Sweet Heart of Mary, be my salvation." 
"Jesus, Mary and Joseph, assist me," 
"Jesus, Mary and Joseph, into your 
hands I commend my body and my soul." 
''Lord, not my will, but thine be done." 
"Father, into Thy hands I commend my 
spirit." "Angel Guardian and my Holy 
Patron, assist me," etc , etc.

Sprinkle the dying person often with 
holy water, especially if he should seem 
to have a hard struggle.

Let not too many persons crowd into 
the death-chamber, especially if it is 
small. If there should be many visitors, 
let them remain but a short time to say 
some prayers and then retire.

Do not sit around in the sick-room or 
adjoining rooms, unless you are sure you 
will be needed and can be of assistance.


Related Link:
Prophecy for Today: "only a few priests will be left..."

"Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death."

Prayer to Our Lady of Sorrows for a Happy Death

Invoke St. Barbara to Receive

True Sacraments Before Death

"...all who shall invoke Thee in memory of my sufferings and 
death... at the end of their life, may receive the last sacraments ... ."


St. Barbara is considered the patroness of a happy death,
because she has obtained for many of her clients the grace
to receive the last sacraments, when in danger of dying
without them. This favor the Virgin Martyr asked as her
pagan father was about to deal her death-blow. "Lord
Jesus," she prayed, who art infinitely good and the sure
foundation of hope and salvation for those who believe in
Thee, grant, I beg Thee, that all who shall invoke Thee in
memory of my sufferings and death, may feel the effects of
Thy mercy and above all, at the end of their life, may
receive the last sacraments with a truly humble and contrite
heart and be delivered from the snares of the devil."

(Source: The Apostleship of Prayer 1895 A.D.,
Shrine of Our Lady of Martyrs, Auriesville, N.Y.)