Let Our Passing Be …

sunrise in vietnam

An overlooked song from the St Louis Jesuit catalogue: “May We Praise You.” Even when I was younger, I loved the line from verse two:

And when life is done, let our passing be like a birth into light of day.

We hope our passing will be free of trauma or worry or pain. One prayer I frequently use at Mass or at the Hours is from the resource Praise God in Song.

For a Christian end to our lives …

What does that mean exactly? That we move from life in this world in a calm way, without panic? That we will stand on virtue at the end? Or that we have let go and are prepared to be carried, like infants brought into their very first world?

Image credit.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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24 Responses to Let Our Passing Be …

  1. charlesincenca says:

    Perhaps John Foley’s masterpiece.

  2. Dick Martin says:

    1 John 5:9-13
    If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater; for this is the witness of God which He has testified of His Son. He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.
    These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God. Hope in a quote from man’s poetry, The witness of God is greater. As told to Nicodemus by Jesus;” you must be born again to enter into Eternal Life”. Born from above. then you will pass calmly and without panic. If you don’t do it God’s way before the end of this life, you WILL pay the eternal price. Jesus paid for your passage for you because you could not afford passage yourself. Your life is in the Son. Without Him you have eternal death and torment. your just a prayer away from receiving LIFE. This prayer WILL save you. Baptism, Conformation. Mass, confession and absolution, Keeping the Law, Church membership,Family,Religion,etc. CANNOT save you . Only Jesus saves. He wants a relationship.No other way. God is very narrow minded. He has the right to be , it was His Son who suffered and died in your place.He exchanged your sin for His righteousness.

  3. Dick Martin says:

    Iv’e seen this before. It’s only 9:47 a. m. What is so important that you should go back to bed when you just got up. This is important. Some one is misleading their flock if you think you can attain Heaven by your works…applying the sacraments. The word of God tells a different ending . It’s either Justice or Mercy. Jesus provided Mercy since we can’t save ourselves. If you think you can save yourself; you will get justice. Gulp This is the ZOE kind of love– that you share the truth.

    • Todd says:

      Dick, this is a post about a piece of music. No different from anything you sing when you worship in your church. And likely written by human beings, just like “May We Praise You.”

      Also, you present yourself as ignorant of Catholicism. Your lack of understanding that we Catholics believe we are saved by grace coupled with your insulting approach to people not-like-you is not seemly behavior of a Christian believer.

      I have invited you to private correspondence. You have always declined. This leads me to believe you are likely interested in faith, but only your own. You sure seem to lack curiosity about mine. Or even how God works in other people. Check your Galatians 5:15 and ponder if Paul would have kindly words for you. Or Jesus, Luke 9:49-50. Your writing here looks to be a human approach, not a godly one.

      Ask your pastor or religious leader what he or she thinks of your arguing nits with a Bible-believing disciple who acknowledges God’s grace but doesn’t go to your church. I’d be interested in hearing what they say. Feel free to invite them to correspond with me as well.

  4. Dick Martin says:

    A song written by man about birth and death that is a contradiction to God’s word is what were talking about. Songs can be misleading and can give a false assurance about eternity. there was no intent on being cruel. It seems that way when you are on the defense knowing we disagree a lot. I take Liam’s cartoon that way– doesn’t apply to either side. kind of rude. Fathers who discipline the Children do it out of Love , to correct them because they don’t get it yet. My father did it, I did it and my sons do it. I am not ignorant of the Catholic way; But you are ignorant of catholic belief if you think you are saved by Grace because you add works to Grace which diminishes Grace to nothing. I believe we are saved by Grace Only and then we are to be doers of the word to please God and receive rewards.The bible tells us that Jesus Paid for every sin of all people, once,forever. There is only one unforgivable sin and that is not forgiven and that is not accepting Jesus. Then God say’s He wills not to remember your sins ever again.
    John 5:24
    “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. Believe and you shall not come into judgment. WOW Thank you Jesus.

    • Liam says:


      You’re not our father.

      When you barge into places solely to keep reminding them how wrong they are, you become a cartoon. Not a prophet or witness to the Good News. Your style of messaging here gets in the way of the Good News.

  5. Dick Martin says:

    I should keep quiet and let you make the wrong choice and tumble to your spiritual death. I barge into places and you can’t stand my presents; this happened to Jesus a lot and the ignorant killed Him. The word is God speaking to you but you keep listening to the Church. I believed it once also until I read the scriptures. you haven’t heard of the Revelation of the apostle Paul. the New Testament replaces the Old Testament; and Grace replaces the Law. ( Law of Sin and Death). It replaces the Justice you deserve with Mercy and Righteousness. You should look up the word Righteousness but it’s not in your latest Catechism. This is in the Bible. Not that means anything to your way of reaching a conclusion, ” The most authoritative “.
    2 Corinthians 5:21
    For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. ——- You must believe THIS to get into Heaven.

    • Liam says:

      You prat on all you want, obviously no one’s stopping you. And actually you have a pretty serious error in there. But you make it pretty clear that you use salvation as a pretext for an ego drama. Unlike Jesus.

  6. Todd says:

    The question I see for how Christians should act: How did Jesus do it? Jesus was quite harsh with religious authorities. Otherwise, the Gospels present him as gentle, listening, genuinely interested in people, even when they had gone astray. John 4 is supremely illustrative of this. He never uttered a word of condemnation, and yet the woman was moved to a significant conversion, even to the point of becoming an apostle (by the broad definition of the term).

    • Atheist Max says:


      “He (Jesus) never uttered a word of condemnation…”

      Wrong. The Character (as written) condemned everyone: “You who are without sin cast the first stone.” Everyone left the scene condemned, perhaps doubly so because they were rejecting the Laws of Moses demanding stoning; “Adulterers must be stoned to death.”

      Of course this part of the Gospel has been proven by Bart Ehrman’s research to be a forgery – no matter.
      If you are going to insist Jesus said these words you must take responsibility for that claim.

      If Jesus is God and if God speaks through ‘scripture’
      He is speaking out of two different sides of his mouth.

      “Not one iota of the Law shall be changed!” – JESUS
      Which law is referring to? “Stone adulterers to death” – Yahweh
      “Abandon Yahweh’s law!” as in… “You who are without sin cast the first stone” – JESUS

      • Liam says:

        It should be noted that Ehrman uses the term forgery in an equivocal way. In common English usage, it always has the connotation of deceit and connivery. Wheres Ehrman uses it to refer to the common ancient practice of pseudonymous writing, where later scribes would gather up material of a given teacher’s school of disciples and put his name on it.

      • Atheist Max says:


        Ehrman says “let he who is without sin…” did not appear in the gospel until after 400 years later.

        The parable tells us:
        God first made a law of stoning adulterers, then later disowned the same law by insinuating nobody is worthy of following it ?!

        God (Jesus) hereby decides His previous law (as Yahweh) was fundamentally immoral and flawed because it demanded sinful people pass judgement on others and kill them with stones.

        1. The parable is likely a made up story to justify the sort of Jesus people wanted to believe in.
        2. Instead of Jesus condemning the adulterer, he condemns Yahweh’s followers for having practiced God’s stoning laws.

        3. The incoherence of the parable in the context of the rest of the Jesus story leaves no indication of what is proper regarding stoning people to death. If all are sinners, then nobody is worthy of following any of the laws.

      • Todd says:

        In addition to what Liam wrote, I was referring to a specific episode, Jesus with the woman at the well. He did not condemn her. I note here you are again employing the methods of a proof-texting fundamentalist. And you have missed the careful context I gave my example. I suggest a little more intellectual rigor–not on whom you quote, but on how you read your adversary.

      • Atheist Max says:

        In this parable Jesus condemned God and those who follow His law:
        “Stone the adulterers to death” – Yahweh

        If God is good why is his law so sick?
        If God’s law is perfect why must it be abandoned as Jesus insinuates?

      • Atheist Max says:


        You started the proof texting right here:

        “the Gospels present (Jesus) as gentle, listening, genuinely interested in people, even when they had gone astray.”

        I challenge that claim.
        You have projected onto this character a description which does not fit the one in the gospels. I see no reason to interpret “believe or be condemned” as gentle, listening or interested in humanity.

        Further: “Hate your parents, hate your children…or you are not worthy of me” is the opposite of caring and gentle. It is demand to tell your family, ‘get with this Jesus program as I have done or I shall abandon you.’

        The absolutist ultimatums of Jesus are the basis of every immoral act done at the command of Christ.

        “shake off the dust…” – JESUS (Matthew 10:14)
        Why, Jesus?
        To help them find love? To help them learn compassion? to teach them the truth of Jesus?

        Instead Jesus invokes a disgusting, dictatorial reason:
        “…..as a testimony against them.” – Jesus (Matthew 10:14)

        I’m not joking when I say this stuff is immoral.

      • Todd says:

        Hi Max. Greetings from the road. You sank your own argument by a misunderstanding of prooftexting. This is when a particular text of the Bible is used to promote a point of view, other evidence to the contrary. I actually did the exact opposite. Your argument, once over the cliff, pretty much mushed when it hit bottom.

        This thread is about a particular piece of music. Not your interpretation of the Bible which, as an atheist, you reject. I invite you to confine your comments to this song, and put future commentary on the open threads where they belong. Thanks in advance for your kind attention to this request.

      • Atheist Max says:

        Ah, yes. Control.
        Religion wants conversation stifled – never broadened.

        So. The Bible verses are for believers only? Then why do missionaries claim it necessary to preach from it to gather new sheep? How awkward.

      • Todd says:

        Broaden your argument into the new thread, please. Unless you have something to say about atheism and music, please.

  7. leefstrong says:

    Speaking of passing – Mike Ramich’s mom went home. The funeral is this morning. I went to the viewing yesterday – M and I hadn’t seen each other in 20 years. It was good; I miss so many of the people from the old Corpus days. Maybe drop him a note?

  8. charlesincenca says:

    My sympathies, leefstrong. Requiem aeternum.
    Todd, congratulations are due as this is by far the looniest commentariat ever hosted here, save for LS and KLS. Dick and Max, why don’t you guys just get out the scythes and start beheading us apostates just for listening to a beautiful work of sacred music? You both have my sympathies as well.

    • Liam says:

      What Dick hasn’t done is offered us his insights into how he sees God’s presence in the workings of nature – he is, as best I can tell, an outdoorsman and nature/hunting guide. He’s so focused on staying “on message” (copying and pasting Scripture verses) that misses out on Jesus’ real-time methods as depicted in the Gospels: working from here-and-now personal encounters (Jesus does quote Scripture from time to time, but very concisely, and never as a magic wand – mostly, he does it to disabuse people of using Scripture in an instrumental way to rationalize an act or omission).

  9. Dick Martin says:

    Has it ever occurred to you that Jesus gave up His Godly attributes and became a man.
    Philippians 2:6-10
    who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God,
    but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.
    And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Jesus went to school in His early years and grew in wisdom ( as the scriptures state) There was no New testament. After His death is when the old ended and the New began.
    Hebrews 8:6
    But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better ( New)covenant, which was established on better promises. He stated a number of time that He didn’t know only the Father knows and was anointed by the Holy Spirit besides being born of the Holy Spirit. Before coming as a baby the word says Jesus created all thing ; all things that exist was created by Him. Even all of nature. No evolution. The scriptures state that the Old testament is obsolete and fading away. This is not out of proof reading. iv’e given you multiple scriptures to prove my statement but you still accuse me of proof texting.

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