Thursday, May 21, 2009

*In Paradisum...............May 21

May the angels lead you into Paradise.
May the martyrs come to greet you on the way.
May they lead you home to the holy city,
to the new and eternal Jerusalem.


In Paradisum [Latin: "Into Paradise"] The title comes from the first words of the Latin text. This hymn is sung during the funeral liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church, usually as the body is taken from the Church for burial. The reference to Lazarus calls to mind the story in the Gospel of Jesus raising his friend from the dead after being moved to tears by the grief of Mary and Martha, the sisters of Lazarus.


Anonymous said...

How comforting it is to think about our dear ones in the care of heaven, I pray for them and ask them to pray for me.What a comfort our faith is!!

Ed Sousa, Sr. said...

I Love This Micki

*~JennD.'J.M.J.'~* said...

ok Micki ~ now this one is a real keeper! I love it! :) ~ J.

Cynthia said...

Dear Micki,
As funeral assistant at our Church,
this one touches my heart deeply. We just ushered a very young soul home to Jesus and I know this would really comfort her parents. Thank you so much for all that you share. It is so very edifying!

Micki said...

Anonymous - I've often wondered how people with no faith survive personal loss. We are truly blessed.

Ed - Thanks Ed.

JennD.'J.M.J.'~ - Thank you...I'm sure the artist thanks you too. I love the way the angel is pointing to the ground...I wonder what the artist was trying to say.

Cynthia - I am so pleased that it might bring comfort to a sorrowing parent. Thank you for sharing it with them. It's one of my favorite parts of a funeral Mass.

Jenny said...

Thank you for this beautiful image and verse. I have always had a vision of Jesus and Mary taking my son by the hands and leading him to Heaven. He was 7 years old and I can picture him clinging to the angel just like that. I would love to find a copy of this holy card.

Lee said...

I have this old picture in its original old frame. The caption reads "Zu Gott," which is "to God" in German. I feel the angel is pointing to where the child's home was. This is so moving.

Micki said...

Jenny - I'm so sorry for your loss. I can imagine this image would bring great comfort to know that his angel was transporting him to heaven. You will always be emotional at your loss but maybe knowing you have an angel in heaven to watch over you is somewhat comforting. If I ever find another card I will contact you. It is old though.

Lee - Thank you for adding that information to this post. I like to think what you said is true...pointing to the child's home and saying "they will always love you, be with God."

aspiring f.o.o.L. said...


Micki, warm greetings,

A few things occurred to me today about this card after reading the exchange.

Maybe the angel - while seeing this child to heaven - is also ministering consolation to those the child left behind on earth - her intention carried out by a mere gesture of hand while busy with the child, her primary charge.

Another possibility has to do with the guardian angel's role as guardian. A little outside the bounds of traditional interpretations, but still possible. Maybe the guardian angel has rescued her charge from some risk or some evil, lifting him out of it spiritually, and is ministering influence of some kind on earth on the child's behalf.

The child, in any case, can represent a child in body or a child in spirit as all of us are admonished to be.

The title 'Heavenward' and 'To God' can apply in either case, too. Whether at death or during any stage of life on earth, these are fundamental calls.

Lee said...

What do you suppose is the significance of the bouquet of flowers the angel is also carrying? From the child's funeral, possibly? I definitely think this is the angel of death or the guardian angel taking the child to heaven. It is a very comforting scene either way.

Micki said...

aspiring f.o.o.L. - Great interpretation. Isn't it wonderful how art can bring about so many different thoughts to the viewers. You always have so much to offer. Thank you.

Lee - Thank you for your comment. So many are comforted by this card. I have no idea what the artist was trying to say with the flowers. Maybe the child wanted to give them to God????

Lee said...

This picture came back to my mind several days later because of the flowers question I, myself, raised. Perhaps the angel brings beautiful flowers for calming purposes so as not to frighten the person he will be taking to God.

I wonder what the artist had in mind?