Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Faithful to the end

Sometimes the deaths of holy people have the air of being deliberately willed. I was told a story of Father Bede Jarrett, the great Dominican provincial who died not very long ago, which illustrates that. I have been told that when he fell into his last illness, Father Bernard Delany went to see him, and said, "Well, Father, of course you know that you've got to get well; we can't possibly spare you." And about a fortnight later, when Father Bernard went to see him again, Father Bede said, "Oh, Father, I'm so dreadfully tired; do you think you could let me want to die after all, or must I go on under obedience wanting to live? " And he naturally said, "Oh, of course I never meant to put you under obedience." And Father Bede said, "Thank you so much," and died about half an hour afterwards.
From The Creed in Slow Motion, by Msgr Ronald Knox

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