I was listening to my favorite radio station recently. It’s IMMACULATE HEART RADIO, AM 1000. (Also available on an app or on your computer.) The podcast of this discussion can be found at ihradio.com; Patrick Madrid Show; January 17, Hour 3.
I drive to work every morning with Patrick Madrid, my favorite host. He was talking about being prepared for death. The caller had just found out that his 39 year old daughter had been hit and killed by a train. I can’t even begin to imagine the pain and devastation of losing a child.
Patrick’s advice to the listeners was to be prepared. There is so much that is out of our control. Whether it is a direct result of the actions of others, a natural disaster, or a freak accident. The result is the same.
Have your affairs in order. If you are an adult, you should have a Trust. Protect yourself, any assets you may have, and those you love. Make provisions for the care and custody of your minor children if something should happen to you. You don’t have to tell others what is specified in your trust, but they should know it exists and how to get access to it if needed.
Even if you don’t have a trust and think you don’t need one, leave some instructions for the people you love.
When I was growing up, my parents told us about “the steel box in the closet”. It was a fireproof box that contained instructions in the event of their death or incapacitation. It also contained the key to their safe deposit box. (Make sure someone you trust is a signer on your box.) When Daddy died, we went straight for “the box” and had all the instructions about notifying the government of his death, insurance policies, etc. When Mom died, we had all the final instructions about the estate. It was a very difficult and emotional time for the family, but there was so much that we didn’t have to worry about.
So, besides taking care of temporal business, there is the spiritual. Keep your relationship with God in good order. Do you keep an open line of communication open? Do you pray daily?
Have you been to the Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confession) recently? Our parish priests hear confessions on Saturdays beginning at 8 a.m. If you are uncomfortable going to a priest who might recognize your voice, go to another parish. JUST GO. You deserve the graces that come with unburdening your soul and conscience and asking for forgiveness. Do you lead a life that follows the teachings of the Catholic Church?
And don’t forget about the relationships you have with family, friends, and even acquaintances. Keep those in order as well. If you love someone in your life, tell them and show them with your actions. You may not have time to make amends when God is ready to call you home.
I pray that you have a long and fulfilling life, but imagine how much better it will be if you live every day as if it’s your last?