My Life In Prayer
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THE PROTESTATION FOR A HAPPY DEATH
THE PROTESTATION FOR A HAPPY DEATH
by St. Alphonsus
My God, prostrate in Thy presence, I adore Thee; and I intend to make the following protestation, as if I were on the point of passing from this life into eternity.
My Lord, because Thou art the infallible Truth, and hast revealed it to the Holy Church, I believe in the mystery of the most Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; three Persons, but only one God; Who for all eternity rewards the just in Heaven, and punishes the wicked in hell. I believe that the Second Person, that is, the Son of God, became Man, and died for the salvation of mankind; and I believe all that the Holy Church believes. I thank Thee for having made me a Christian, and I protest that I will live and die in this holy Faith.
My God, my Hope, trusting in Thy promises, I hope from Thy mercy, not through my own merits, but through the merits of Jesus Christ, for the pardon of my sins, perseverance in Thy grace, and, after this miserable life, the glory of Paradise. And should the devil at death tempt me to despair at the sight of my sins, I protest that I will always hope in Thee, O Lord, and that I desire to die in the loving arms of Thy goodness.
O God, worthy of infinite love, I love Thee with my whole heart, more than I love myself; and I protest that I desire to die making an act of love that I may thus continue to love Thee eternally in Heaven which, for this end, I desire and ask of Thee. And if hitherto, O Lord, instead of loving Thee, I have despised Thy infinite goodness, I repent of it with all my heart, and I protest that I wish to die, always weeping over and detesting the offenses I have committed against Thee. I purpose for the future rather to die than ever to sin again; and for the love of Thee I pardon all who have offended me.
O my God, I accept death, and all the sufferings which will accompany it; I unite it with the sufferings and death of Jesus Christ, and offer it in acknowledgment of Thy supreme dominion, and in satisfaction for my sins. Do Thou, O Lord, accept of this sacrifice which I make of my life, for the love of that great Sacrifice which Thy Divine Son made of Himself upon the altar of the Cross. I resign myself entirely to Thy Divine will, as though I were now on my death bed, and protest that I wish to die, saying: O Lord, always Thy will be done.
Most holy Virgin, my Advocate and my Mother Mary, thou art and wilt always be, after God, my hope and my consolation at the hour of death. From this moment I have recourse to thee, and beg of thee to assist me in that passage. O my dear Queen, do not abandon me in that last moment! Come then to take my soul and present it to thy Son. Henceforward I shall expect thee; and I hope to die under thy mantle, and clinging to thy feet. My Protector, St. Joseph, St. Michael Archangel, my Angel Guardian, my Holy Patrons, do you all assist in that last combat with hell.
An Thou, my Crucified Love, Thou my Jesus, Who wert pleased to choose for Thyself so bitter a death to obtain for me a good death, remember at that hour that I am one of those dear sheep Thou didst purchase with Thy Blood. Thou, when all the world shall have forsaken me, and not one shall be able to assist me, canst alone console me and save me, do Thou make me worthy to receive Thee in the Viaticum, and suffer me not to lose Thee forever, and to be banished forever to a distance from Thee. No, my beloved Saviour, receive me then into Thy sacred Wounds, for I now embrace Thee. At my last breath I intend to breathe forth my soul into the loving wound in Thy side, saying now, for that moment: Jesus and Mary, I give you my heart and my soul.
O happy suffering, to suffer for God! Happy death, to die in the Lord!
I embrace Thee now, my good Redeemer, that I may die in Thy embraces. If, O my soul, Mary assists you at your departure, and Jesus receives your last breath, it will not be death, but a sweet repose.
Then it will not be death, but ineffable rest That will close, in the end, on these earth-wearied eyes. When my forehead by Mary is soothingly pressed, And Jesus receives my last penitent sighs.