Repenting on the last minute of life


#1

Can a sinner in a mortal state be saved if he sincerily repents on death bed on the last minute??
Lets say hes dying in mortal state (a killer or rappist) hes really repented of this mortal sin but there no enough time to bring a priest for him to confess, but he sincerily confesses and repent directly to god and accepts jesus as his lord and savior and ask for sincere forgiveness and faith?

Is there any chance he will be saved in death bed?


#2

Yes. "Do I indeed derive any pleasure from the death of the wicked? says the Lord GOD. Do I not rather rejoice when he turns from his evil way that he may live?" (Ezek 18:23). The principle follows as well from the parable of the Workers in the Vineyard (Mt 20:1-16).

That said, it is not as easy as just "being sorry." Catholic theology recognizes two kinds of contrition (sorrow for one's sins), perfect contrition and imperfect contrition. Imperfect contrition occurs when one is sorry for one's sins because of a fear of Hell, or guilt over having injured a victim, or a recognition of the horribleness of one's actions. Perfect contrition occurs when one's repentance comes from a love of God and a sorrow at having offended him. Perfect contrition also requires the subject to feel a firm purpose of avoiding all sin in the future and a desire for sacramental Reconciliation. (See especially Session XIV, Chapter IV of the Council of Trent.)

Only perfect contrition is sufficient to justify a person absent receiving sacramental absolution. Imperfect contrition will not do so. I have no idea how often it happens that a sinner undergoes a last-minute conversion that meets the requirements of perfect contrition. When he does, though, he is immediately restored to the state of grace.


#3

If it is true and heartfelt Body, Mind & Spirit then yes!!


#4

**"VI. THE MAN WHO WAS SAVED BY CONTRITION.

IT happened, about the year 1614, that a prince whose name is not known died in a duel which he fought against some one who had offended him. He died directly after committing a mortal sin. He died without Confession, he had but a single moment before dying to prepare himself for death. In that one moment, however, he prayed to God. There was a holy nun of the order of the Visitation, called Sister Mary Martignat, God let her know that the soul of this prince had been saved. In the last moment of his life he received into his heart the grace of making a true and sincere act of contrition for his sins. He had not lost the faith she says, so he was ready to receive this grace into his heart as a match receives fire. This Act of Contrition saved his soul from Hell. She said that it was a most wonderful thing that God saved him; because, commonly only those who lead a good life are saved. She saw that when he was saved a million other souls were lost: it was not on his own account that God gave him this grace; but on account of that article of the Creed, the Communion of the Saints, that is, because others had prayed for him. She saw that the devil fully expected to have his soul, and he was never so disappointed since he was in Hell; she saw this soul in the deepest part of the flames of Purgatory, and would very likely remain there till the day of judgment. It was covered and surrounded by fiery thorns which hung down on all sides of it. -- How good God is, how his ways are above the ways of men. A man commits a murder, they hang him; he may be very sorry for it, no matter, they will not forgive him; they hang him. A man commits the most terrible crimes against God, the man is sorry, God forgives him!"**
- Fr. John Furniss

saintsbooks.net/books/Fr.%20John%20Furniss%20-%20Confession.html


#5

[quote="MidnightSun12, post:4, topic:322675"]
**"VI. THE MAN WHO WAS SAVED BY CONTRITION.

IT happened, about the year 1614, that a prince whose name is not known died in a duel which he fought against some one who had offended him. He died directly after committing a mortal sin. He died without Confession, he had but a single moment before dying to prepare himself for death. In that one moment, however, he prayed to God. There was a holy nun of the order of the Visitation, called Sister Mary Martignat, God let her know that the soul of this prince had been saved. In the last moment of his life he received into his heart the grace of making a true and sincere act of contrition for his sins. He had not lost the faith she says, so he was ready to receive this grace into his heart as a match receives fire. This Act of Contrition saved his soul from Hell. She said that it was a most wonderful thing that God saved him; because, commonly only those who lead a good life are saved. She saw that when he was saved a million other souls were lost: it was not on his own account that God gave him this grace; but on account of that article of the Creed, the Communion of the Saints, that is, because others had prayed for him. She saw that the devil fully expected to have his soul, and he was never so disappointed since he was in Hell; she saw this soul in the deepest part of the flames of Purgatory, and would very likely remain there till the day of judgment. It was covered and surrounded by fiery thorns which hung down on all sides of it. -- How good God is, how his ways are above the ways of men. A man commits a murder, they hang him; he may be very sorry for it, no matter, they will not forgive him; they hang him. A man commits the most terrible crimes against God, the man is sorry, God forgives him!"**
- Fr. John Furniss

saintsbooks.net/books/Fr.%20John%20Furniss%20-%20Confession.html

[/quote]

Amen.


#6

[quote="mtsacricky, post:1, topic:322675"]
Can a sinner in a mortal state be saved if he sincerily repents on death bed on the last minute??
Lets say hes dying in mortal state (a killer or rappist) hes really repented of this mortal sin but there no enough time to bring a priest for him to confess, but he sincerily confesses and repent directly to god and accepts jesus as his lord and savior and ask for sincere forgiveness and faith?

Is there any chance he will be saved in death bed?

[/quote]

Yes. But there are more warnings against presumption that this could be done.

Jesus' parable of the Foolish Virgins who try to repent of their not having enough oil ... but don't get the oil to their station IN TIME ... and are locked OUT. For one. Warnings about the narrow door and how few would find it ... seem to imply seeking out the Kingdom a bit and being "strong enough" to enter < from Jesus' "narrow door" example.

It's better to be safe than sorry.

A good example of the OTHER thing would be St. Dismas (the "good" thief) who repented JUST in time. Not on a deathbed ... but a cross of death.

In THAT case however Dismas:

  • Was suffering horribly, and continued to suffer for a while.

  • Publicly confessed his guilt before quite a crowd (also the justness of his sentence!)

  • Publicly flew in the face of public opinion, vulnerable as he was, to say that Jesus had no guilt.

  • Publicly declared his faith and belief in Jesus (when at the time Jesus didn't LOOK like
    He really had a Kingdom to go into).

  • Made a Public and humble plea to Jesus to be remembered by Him when He entered into His kingdom.

Which is substantially more than a deathbed :shrug: "I'm sorry now."


#7

That's like saying I'll be a good husband at the momment of my death, but not before! What kind of stingy love is that? Would you wish to spend years of pain being purged? Your whole life wasted, and consumed by fire? Would you wish to enter Heaven empty handed? Not having one experience to share, with all the saints, of how you witnessed for God? What a sad poverty of the soul.


#8

[quote="Regina_Love, post:7, topic:322675"]
That's like saying I'll be a good husband at the momment of my death, but not before! What kind of stingy love is that? Would you wish to spend years of pain being purged? Your whole life wasted, and consumed by fire? Would you wish to enter Heaven empty handed? Not having one experience to share, with all the saints, of how you witnessed for God? What a sad poverty of the soul.

[/quote]

In reading your (very good) answer, I'm put in mind of how Jesus sometimes in answering did a re-direct to a more important, incisive and meaningful question. Better than the more
vague and intellectual question posed.

You are sort of demonstrating that the proposed question has its dangers ... and might not be the best question to ASK - because .... (and then your excellent examples).

Jesus was once asked "will many be saved or few" (by someone ... with intellectual curiosity).

Jesus made it PERSONAL as in YOU (understood) " ... try to enter through the narrow door ... many will try and not be strong enough ..." < paraphrase but accurate I think.

This gives one pause. And your examples are applicable for today, whether one is married or not. :thumbsup:


#9

[quote="Regina_Love, post:7, topic:322675"]
That's like saying I'll be a good husband at the momment of my death, but not before! What kind of stingy love is that? Would you wish to spend years of pain being purged? Your whole life wasted, and consumed by fire? Would you wish to enter Heaven empty handed? Not having one experience to share, with all the saints, of how you witnessed for God? What a sad poverty of the soul.

[/quote]

I rejoice when a soul is saved, no matter when it occurs. Being in the presence of God will fill any emptiness or "poverty".


#10

[quote="MarkThompson, post:2, topic:322675"]
Yes. "Do I indeed derive any pleasure from the death of the wicked? says the Lord GOD. Do I not rather rejoice when he turns from his evil way that he may live?" (Ezek 18:23). The principle follows as well from the parable of the Workers in the Vineyard (Mt 20:1-16).

That said, it is not as easy as just "being sorry." Catholic theology recognizes two kinds of contrition (sorrow for one's sins), perfect contrition and imperfect contrition. Imperfect contrition occurs when one is sorry for one's sins because of a fear of Hell, or guilt over having injured a victim, or a recognition of the horribleness of one's actions. Perfect contrition occurs when one's repentance comes from a love of God and a sorrow at having offended him. Perfect contrition also requires the subject to feel a firm purpose of avoiding all sin in the future and a desire for sacramental Reconciliation. (See especially Session XIV, Chapter IV of the Council of Trent.)

Only perfect contrition is sufficient to justify a person absent receiving sacramental absolution. Imperfect contrition will not do so. I have no idea how often it happens that a sinner undergoes a last-minute conversion that meets the requirements of perfect contrition. When he does, though, he is immediately restored to the state of grace.

[/quote]

What a good answer.

My old catechism warns that a bad life usually end in a bad death (unrepentant), whereas a good life usually ends in a good death.

St. Joseph, patron of the dying, please obtain for us each a good death. :signofcross:


#11

Of course, in the example you site where he sincerely (known to be sincerely to God) repents, it is a certainty he is saved. God’s mercy is infinite to those who desire it. The scenario you describe cannot be debated.

Bishop Sheen once said that God will give a suicide a chance to repent in the time between the bullet leaving the gun and entering his head.

Most importantly read Mathew 20:1-16, the parable of the laborers.


#12

Although the Church teaches in the catechism that "Suicide contradicts the natural inclination of the human being to preserve and perpetuate his life. It is gravely contrary to the just love of self.", the Church also teaches that "We should not despair of the eternal salvation of persons who have taken their own lives. By ways known to him alone, God can provide the opportunity for salutary repentance. The Church prays for persons who have taken their own lives."

IOW, even a person who presumably died in mortal sin because they willfully chose the grave sin of suicide as their last act on this earth is not to be made the object of despair. It is always possible for any person to be provided with the opportunity for salutary repentance at the moment of death, by ways known to God alone.


#13

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