If I were to die tonight…

If one were to die tonight, what then?

Death, Judgement, Heaven, and Hell says the Church.





What do those Four Last Things mean to the modern mind?

Does the modern mind prefer not to look that far ahead?

What is the safest way through the cataract?

All Hallows Eve is coming, as is the end of the Church year. Times have changed since Hieronymus Bosch painted the above pictures. Eternity hasn’t.

Nobody likes deadlines, and this blog doesn’t have any, so all the post’s here are written without time pressure. However, we all have one unavoidable deadline.

I leave you with the words of an alumnus of Pembroke College, Oxford:

“Depend upon it, sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.”

About Brother Burrito

A sinner who hopes in God's Mercy, and who cannot stop smiling since realizing that Christ IS the Way , the Truth and the Life. Alleluia!
This entry was posted in Living Catholic lives, Satan and hell, Spiritual Life, Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to If I were to die tonight…

  1. toadspittle says:

    Hell looks a lot more fun than Heaven. They’ve got a Platypus!

    Did Dr. Johnson go to Pembroke?

    Cole Porter once asked Noel Coward, (yes, Noel, not Neill, Burro, and I can’t do the two little dots, sorry)
    “If you discovered I’d died during the night, what would you do?”
    “Probably not feel much like breakfast,” said Coward,
    “Be a bit peckish by lunchtime, though.”


  2. Mimi says:

    A genuinely scary Hallowe’en post, Burro! 😉


  3. Gertrude says:

    It is good to be reminded of the Novissima. When I was young we were taught a prayer for a happy death. It was:

    O God, who has doomed all men to die, but has concealed from all the hour of their death, grant that I may pass my days in the practice of holiness and justice, and that I might deserve to quit this world in the peace of a good conscience, and in the embraces of Thy love. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen,

    Bit scary eh? It certainly was to me, but ensured I rarely missed Confession on a Saturday morning! (In those days we were encouraged to attend Confession weekly, in preparation for Holy Mass on Sundays!).

    Many of these old prayers have all but disappeared in these post-conciliar times, and I can’t imagine todays children (who don’t learn their catechism) being taught what were, in those days, called ‘necessary prayers’.


  4. toadspittle says:

    We’re all taking a processional walk up the hill to the cemetery tomorrow, so Toad ought to start being serious now(!).

    But, I must confess it was the idea, put to us when I was about 12 – that finite beings could well expect, and indeed merit, infinite punishment – that first go me thinking.
    Didn’t seem to fit the crime. Still doesn’t.

    Apropos of Hell, Toad also recalls reading that some venerable old cleric, when asked what he knew about Hell, replied that he knew scarcely a thing, except that he was sure that it was a great deal more pleasant than being on earth.
    After you with the Platypus!


  5. joyfulpapist says:

    I’ve just had a chuckle over this post on Halloween (from Inside Catholic):

    And given their [Protestant] theology, you can see their point: The souls of the dead are either in Heaven — in which case they’re not walking the earth and need not be appeased, represented, mocked, or even commemorated, depending on which reading you give to the way we Catholics appropriated old pagan customs that marked this time of year– or else they’re in Hell, and not worth remembering. Anyone who’s dead and suffering deserves it, and will go on suffering forever. There’s no sense in attracting his attention.

    We, on the other hand, picture the Church in three unequal slices: a golden sliver, already enjoying beatitude; we dung-spattered soldiers still slogging through the trenches here on earth; and the vast military hospital where most of us hope to end up, a very big tent indeed where souls heal from the damage they did themselves on earth and are made whole enough to be welcomed into Heaven. When we do ourselves up in costumes and tromp through the streets on Halloween, we are marching in a kind of Veterans’ Day Parade in honor of the sinners who went before us, not yet into glory but into the painful, therapeutic shadow it casts outside its doors.

    He goes on to say:

    Now, I’m very much in agreement that two-year-old children should not be dressed as Satan. For one thing, it’s a little bit too realistic. Indeed, the fallenness of children, which Augustine bemoaned in his Confessions, is so evident to everyone that garbing the little tykes in the robes of absolute evil seems to overstress the point. Nor do we wish to trivialize the serious, deadly purpose of our infernal enemy — dragging each of us screaming to Hell. If you’re feeling puckish, it’s in much better taste to dress up your kids as Osama bin Laden, Annibale Bugnini, or some other of the Evil One’s lesser minions. If you must dress your boys as saints, choose military martyrs, canonized crusaders, or patriarchs from the Old Testament. One suggestion I made as editor of the Feasts and Seasons section of Faith & Family magazine was this: Dress up your daughters as early Roman martyrs, like Agnes and Agatha, and your sons as the Roman soldiers, gladiators, and lions that sent them to heaven. Stock up on lots of fake blood for the girls’ machine-washable tunics, and let the games begin! (Alas, this idea never saw print.)



  6. kathleen says:

    Good to be reminded of this vital doctrine, all to often neglected nowadays.

    What about Purgatory though, which is where I believe most souls end up after Death and Judgement?
    Still, I suppose Purgatory is only a transitional stage, a cleansing process, before going onto Heaven 🙂 . Some spend a long “time” there we are told….. although there is no “time” in the next world.

    (Am I being influenced by Toad’s riddled way of expressing views ??)


  7. toadspittle says:

    (Am I being influenced by Toad’s riddled way of expressing views ??)

    Hope so, Kath. That’s the idea.

    Alternative views. Stimulating. Even when erroneous.

    (If I were to be in the States tonight, I would expect to see several innocents besmirched with Sara Palin and Rush Limbaugh masks. To be merely caparisoned as the Prince of Evil would constitute a positive plus, posits Toad. Well, he would, wouldn’t he?)


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