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The "Last Things"
By
Diane M. Houdek
Source: Bringing Home the Word
Published: Sunday, November 18, 2012

I heard someone say once that we are no nearer our death today than we were on the day we were baptized. Those of us who are striving to live faithful Christian lives know that death is not the end, but just another change in lives that stretch to eternity. In many ways, we in the 21st century are less adept at dealing with the realities of death than people in earlier times, when it was much closer and more intimate. As our life expectancy increases, so does our denial of death. But without an understanding of the limitations of this life, we have trouble appreciating the limitlessness of the afterlife. St. Francis concludes his Canticle of Creation with this verse: “All praise be yours, my Lord, through Sister Death, From whose embrace no mortal can escape. Woe to those who die in mortal sin! Happy those She finds doing your will! The second death can do no harm to them.” November has traditionally been the month of the “last things”: death, judgment, heaven, hell. Without being morbid or consumed with fear, we might take time to consider that this life isn’t all there is—and that’s not such a bad thing.

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