in the Shadow of Death
Terri Schindler, bright star in twilight, waning now,
America, draped in funeral pall's dark shadow
Beloved Land of the free and Home of the brave
Become the culture of death, from womb to grave . . .
Terri Schindler, bright star, God's grace still to flame,
That beckoned one last chance before final shame:
Holocaust upon holocaust; a forsaken, desolate cry
Gone the goodness, precious right to life, now the duty to die . . .
Terri Schindler, bright star, God's stilled, fallen flame,
Terri Schindler, bright star, His word to proclaim:
"Consider that I set before thee this day life and good,
And on the other hand, death and evil:
That thou mayst love the Lord thy God,
And walk in His ways, and His Law not to bewail,
That thou mayst live, and He may multiply thee
In the land which thou shalt go, to cherish and be . . ."
Innocence slain! O! fervent plea: Let me live!
Throughout the land death rattles: No! make her die!
Holocaust upon holocaust, hear the innocent slain: their cry
Terri Schindler, bright star, thou didst die, yet liveth still,
In every heart that chooseth life, obedient to Almighty God
Unashamed to render praise and glory to His holy Will . . .
PRAYERS FROM THE CATHOLIC RACCOLTA:
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon them.
May they rest in peace. Amen.
Requiem aeternam dona eis Domine; et lux perpetua luceat eis. Requiescant in pace. Amen.
Dies irae, dies illa
Day of wrath and doom impending,
David's word with Sibyl's blending,
Heaven and earth in ashes ending!
O what fear man's bosom rendeth,
When from Heaven the Judge descendeth,
On whose sentence all dependeth!
Wondrous sound the trumpet flingeth,
Through earth's sepulchres it ringeth,
All before the throne it bringeth.
Death is struck, and nature quaking,
All creation is awaking,
To its Judge an answer making.
Lo! the book exactly worded,
Wherein all hath been recorded;
Thence shall judgment be awarded.
When the Judge His seat attaineth,
And each hidden deed arraigneth,
Nothing unavenged remaineth.
What shall I, frail man, be pleading?
Who for me be interceding,
When the just are mercy needing?
King of majesty tremendous,
Who dost free salvation send us,
Fount of pity, then befriend us!
Think, kind Jesu!-----my salvation
Caused Thy wondrous Incarnation;
Leave me not to reprobation.
Faint and weary Thou hast sought me,
On the Cross of suffering bought me;
Shall such grace be vainly brought me?
Righteous Judge! for sin's pollution
Grant Thy gift of absolution,
Ere that day of retribution.
Guilty, now I pour my moaning,
All my shame with anguish owning;
Spare, O God, thy suppliant groaning!
Through the sinful woman shriven,
Through the dying thief forgiven,
Thou to me a hope hast given.
Worthless are my prayers and sighing,
Yet, good Lord, in grace complying,
Rescue me from fires undying.
With Thy sheep a place provide me,
From the goats afar divide me,
To Thy right hand do thou guide me.
When the wicked are confounded,
Doomed to shame and woe unbounded,
Call me, with Thy Saints surrounded.
Low I kneel, with heart's submission,
See, like ashes my contrition!
Help me in my last condition!
Ah! that day of tears and mourning!
From the dust of earth returning,
Man for judgment must prepare him:
Spare, O God, in mercy spare him!
Lord, all-pitying, Jesu blest,
Grant them Thine eternal rest. Amen.
MOST loving Jesus, I humbly beseech Thee, that Thou Thyself wouldst offer to Thine eternal Father in behalf of the Holy Souls in Purgatory, the Most Precious Blood which poured forth from the sacred Wounds of Thine adorable Body, together with Thine agony and death. And do thou likewise, O sorrowful Virgin Mary, present unto Him, together with the dolorous Passion of thy dear Son, thine own sighs and tears, and all the sorrows thou didst suffer in His suffering, in order that, through the merits of the same, refreshment may be granted to the Souls now suffering in the fiery torments of Purgatory, so that, being delivered from that painful prison, they may be clothed with glory in Heaven, there to sing the mercies of God for ever and ever. Amen.
Absolve, O Lord, the Souls of all the faithful departed from every bond of sin, that with Thy gracious assistance they may deserve to escape the judgment of vengeance and enjoy the blessedness of everlasting light.
PRAYER FOR FORGIVENESS
Forgive them that plunder Thy creation with decrees of death for those who are less than perfect in their cankerous eyes; grant them the mercy of sweet repentance, convert our nation, convert it, even if Thou must chastise it. Smite our power, our arrogance, but not my hope, nor my faith, nor my charity. Heal our land, not by letting us surrender to a false peace, but heal it through the miracle of life: convert our country, O God, give us the grace to champion life from its very first moment to its natural last, and most of all the grace to will it so.
Forgive those who made a mockery of Terri's fight in thoughtless entertainment, or in anger turned to wrath and threats of vengeance. Forgive us all, those who could have done more, but did not; those who wanted to try, but dared not; those who turned away with cold hearts or with false compassion. Don't give up on us Lord, until one day each one of us can say with St. Paul, my beloved Patron, "I have fought the good fight . . ."
Dearest Terri, Sweetest Lamb,
May you rest in peace,
may perpetual light shine upon you.
St. Maximilian Kolbe:
Murdered by dehydration and starvation in Auschwitz for saving a Jewish father of a young son. He was placed in a small airless bunker to die by torture. In the end his executioners finished him off with an injection.
As we go now into that dark night, where rockets no more flare, where the star-spangled banner morphs into the swastika, where the helpless with diminished cognition are put to death in the same way in the name of compassion, it is the very soul of our nation that is dying, indeed is almost dead as I write these lines. Pray for God's mercy, pray that it is not now too late . . .
-----------Pauly Fongemie, March 31, 2005
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