My mother, Claire Nix, got sick just before Christmas 2022. Before offering my own low-Mass on Christmas day, I remember attending a sung midnight Mass at another traditional Church near me. Before Mass, I was kneeling on the prie-Dieu in the sanctuary as I listened to a Christmas carol called Lully, Lulla, Lullay. It’s a silly name, but it was one of the most beautiful carols. I had never heard it before. Although dark before that midnight Mass, I hid my face because I was crying. Deep inside, I knew my mother would not beat this illness, even though she was admitted to the hospital with rather mild symptoms. She then went unresponsive in the hospital and I gave her extreme unction.
She recovered a bit. Then, she ended up in the hospital again. I asked her pastor to hear her confession, and he did.
Over the past three months, my Mom became so weak that she lost her ability to walk. My brother and sister and I never pictured moving my parents into a Nursing Home, not even a Catholic one. But my parents needed much help with physical needs in this illness. Her wealthy and generous family of origin paid for a two-bedroom condo-suite on the 12th floor of a Catholic Nursing Home in downtown Denver called Gardens at St. Elizabeth. They also paid for full-time personal care for my ailing mother.
Eventually, she lost her ability to swallow. By the time she died, she was about 60 pounds. I am 95% sure her illness and death came from her three COVID-19 vaccinations. It trashed her immune system, and crossed the blood-brain barrier to give her seizures during her first entrance into the hospital in the Christmas Octave. Clinicians tried to say her initial demise in December came from immunotherapy which had tackled a 2022 cancer—a cancer some of us believe came from the covid-vaccine knocking out her NK and T cells. NK and T cells circulate in the body to eradicate cancer. The Covid-19 vaccine has been proven to destroy NK and T cells. So, I believe her cancer was promoted and her immune system were demoted by the Covid-19 vaccine. Regarding my Mom’s horrific symptoms the last three months, you will probably not find one case in history where immunotherapy has done this to someone. But we are probably in the millions on the Covid-vaccine.
None of my mother’s clinicians believe she died of cancer. Not one. Then again, they didn’t care about her, probably because of her age. My mom’s main cancer doc at University of Colorado Hospital was so absent from my family the last six months that she didn’t even reach out to my Dad until two weeks after my mom had died. She claims she “didn’t know.” I actually believe her.
In the end, even some who initially believed that false-diagnosis of immunotherapy causing her demise were forced to come to the conclusion that my Mom died of an “unknown cause.” Interesting. How is it possible that the only people now dying of an “unknown cause” are vaccinated? Or three-times vaccinated, like my mother. Granted, I see her mostly as the victim, not the perpetrator; she believed her physician, the mainstream media and even the Catholic Church hierarchy in telling her to keep taking that deadly shot. That shot harmed not only older women like my mother, but it has done terrible damage to babies carried by vaccinated-women. I predicted both of these two years ago on this blog.
But today I do not want to write about what we disagreed on. I want to show you what a generous and selfless woman she was, and I want to explain two mini-miracles at the very end of her life that I did not expect. I mean I truly did not expect these extraordinary graces in her last three days on earth.
April 1st 2023 was this past Saturday. That day, my fifth niece, Lizzy, was baptized on the first floor chapel at the Gardens at St. Elizabeth. My brother-in-law and sister are raising their family as Russian Catholics. Eastern Rite Catholics’ infants normally receive confirmation and Holy Communion on the day of their baptism. Their priest had to get permission from his own Eparchy to do this in this Western-Rite chapel. (See featured image at very top of this blog post to see the table of the baptism set-up.) My sister wanted this baptism of her newest baby to be as physically proximate to our ailing mother as possible. Since my Mom couldn’t even come downstairs to the chapel by this point, I FaceTimed Lizzy’s sacraments for my Mom as my care-taker held my aunt’s phone.
The Russian Catholic priest (an American by birth) baptized my niece Lizzy and gave her Holy Communion on Saturday. (Again, Eastern Rite infants receive Holy Communion on their baptism day.) Meanwhile, my mother was 12 floors up, dying. Then, he offered to come up-stairs and give my mother Holy Communion. Eastern Catholics give infants their first Holy Communion by simply smearing a little of the Precious Blood on the lips or gums. So also, my mother had to receive this way, for she had lost her ability to swallow by this point.
The priest was only able to smear a little of the Precious Blood on the lips of my poor dying mother. She would die two days later. My mother’s last Holy Communion was not only from the same chalice—but on the same day and same location as that of as her sixth grandchild’s. My Mom’s last communion was from the chalice of her grandaugher’s first communion.
Up to this point, I had spent many nights sleeping at her side in this nursing home (and occasionally the hospital) over the past few months of her illness. (This is why I haven’t podcasted in a month.) More recently, she woke up dreaming of rain (due to dehydration) and “spaghetti dinners” (due to starvation.) Those wicked end-of-life-causing eugenicists called “hospice” (suggested to me by Gardens at St. Elizabeth) told me on the phone I was “prolonging her suffering” for not letting them starve or dehydrate my own mother to death. It’s true: I got my Mom IVs and as much fluids via oral-swabs as possible—up to the very end. I don’t regret one medical decision I made in doing the Catholic version of comfort-care, even as hospice urged me on to do their Nazi version of comfort-care. Indeed, these are very different world-views.
But sometimes I said non-compassionate things to my own mother, too. For example, after Lizzie’s baptism, friends and family were eating bagels in the kitchen of their new nursing home condo, while my Mom was 25 feet away in her bedroom, suffering immensely. Kneeling at her bedside, I carelessly told her how everyone was eating bagels in the other room after Lizzy’s baptism. What a horrible thing to say to a woman who was starving to death! But she simply smiled and said, “That makes me so happy.” And she meant it. This wasn’t feigned interest. She was truly so happy we were all together, even as she starved to death (on top of other pathophysiologies, of course, including a destroyed immune system.)
All of this shows the heart of my mother who, although a progressive Catholic, constantly thought of other people before herself. I have learned so much from her in life. I only write here she was a “progressive Catholic” not as a dig on her, but so that the reader may understand how extraordinary was the last hour of her life. You will read that below, soon.
But back to the bagels for a minute: My mother, Claire Nix (née Donnelly) truly was happy that people were enjoying themselves around her. Of course, she would have liked to get up and join us all for the baptism and bagels. She would have been the last to leave the party if she were healthier. But despite this, she was thrilled we were all together for a baptism, even as she was dying, unable to move with less than 48 hours to live. It shows how wrong that hospice was in thinking that they get to decide who is worthy of life. My Mom is glad she got to “enjoy” those bagels with my family. Several times over the past week I knelt and wept at her bedside, holding her hand, telling her how much I was going to miss her.
Now we come to her final few hours on earth. She has received all the sacraments by this point. Like the night before, I slept in the recliner next to her. But this last night, her breathing became shallow by 3am. I asked her to join me mentally in my verbally praying the prayer of the dying act of faith in the old Collectio Rituum in English, page 101. I also prayed the Apostolic Pardon over my mother, which is quite short, but you can see entirely here. At 3:30am or a little later, I woke my aunt Ria (who was also sleeping in the nursing home condo in the main room next to my Mom’s care taker) to watch my Mom’s breathing. This was so I could offer Mass in the other bedroom next door, but in the same suite my uncle had purchased for my Mom.
After Mass, I asked my aunt if I should call my brother and sister, at home with their families. She didn’t think it was the time yet, so I obeyed her. She was correct. And so, she went back to sleep on the couch. But then my Mom went downhill quickly. At 6am, I called my brother Michael and my sister Megan. I said “Mom’s still alive but her pulse is down to the 20s.” I woke my aunt and she knew it was game-time. Everyone then arrived: My Dad and aunt, my brother and sister had come just in time. In fact, my sister had to bring Lizzy only because she was still nursing her. Everyone moved rapidly, but with peace and silence.
We quickly began the old Roman Rite prayers of the Commendation of the Soul and the De Expiration prayers and the Litany of the Dying over my Mom. Around us in that room we saw lights, candles, lilies, a cooing infant and a peaceful room 12 stories above the Blessed Sacrament. A few days before beginning all this, I told my sister how much these old-Roman prayers are like the Byzantine liturgy. She agreed, later recalling her favorite words of the Commendation of the Soul to me:
And then, when your soul goes forth from your body, may the radiant company of angels come to meet you. May the assembly of the apostles, our judges, welcome you. May the victorious army of white-robed martyrs meet you on your way. May the glittering throng of confessors, bright as lilies, gather about you. May the glorious choir of virgins receive you. May the patriarchs enfold you in the embrace of blessed peace. May St. Joseph beloved patron of the dying raise you on high in hope and may the holy Mother of God, the Virgin Mary, lovingly turn her eyes toward you. And then, gentle and joyful, may Christ Jesus appear before you to assign you a place forever among those who stand in His presence.
This being prayed, we now arrive at 7am on 3 April, the day most Church Fathers say that Jesus died. But it’s Holy Monday for us in 2023. It’s now 20 minutes before my own mother would die. By now, her breathing became more and more shallow at every prayer. These prayers of the Rite from the Collectio Rituum described above went on from 6:20am to 7am. At 7am we began the Rosary as a family. During every decade of the Rosary, Mom’s breathing became more infrequent and labored. During the final decade everyone put their hands on my mother in great anticipation at what was about to happen to change our lives forever. My sister even laid her daughter Lizzy on my Mother’s bruised and tiny arm that had fought such a valiant fight the past 3.5 months. By now, her arms looked like those of a holocaust victim. I can’t begin to describe the suffering this strong-willed woman endured the last three and a half months.
As we finished that final decade of the Rosary, my Mom took her final tiny gasp during the Hail Holy Queen. She died right then at 7:20am. I did a final deliverance prayer against any demons that might try to tempt her at the exit of her soul. I then sang loudly a Salve Regina, purposely not thinking of my mother so I could finish it without bursting into tears. I then told my brother to unplug the oxygen machine. As her heart arrested, she was grey, with her mouth open. Her little broken body was 60 pounds, ground to absolute humiliation by unknown skin problems from her childhood and more recent BigPharma insults to her internal organs.
I call this blog post “Divine Providence at Two Births” because 1) Lizzy was born physically recently, and then spiritually in the waters of baptism. And because 2) The prayer of St. Francis of Assisi says that it is “In dying we are born to eternal life.” Even if St. Francis didn’t write that prayer, the early Christians all called their day of death their own “birthday.” Thus, I must ask: Why should I mourn excessively at my own mother’s birthday as she goes from this false world to the eternal world? The traditional Roman Rite of burial even asks a grace for the sad-survivors of the deceased:
Take away out of their hearts the spirit of rebellion, and teach them to see Your good and gracious purpose working in all the trials, which You send upon them. Grant that they may not languish in fruitless and unavailing grief, nor sorrow as those who have no hope, but through their tears look meekly up to You, the God of all consolation.
My Mom died right after dawn on Monday of Holy Week. Light streamed into her bedroom and we felt surrounded by peace and grace and even joy. Most importantly, she died with her scapular on (something I enrolled her in only at the beginning of her hospital stay.) We enjoyed this peace and protection all day long, even when I went into the room with her body about ten times the next few hours. I very much believe Our Lady’s promise that whoever dies wearing the brown scapular will not suffer the pains of hell. My Mom was also praying the daily Rosary during the last few years of her life.
Her earthly suffering ended this Holy Week of 2023. With all the grace and peace surrounding my family the day of her death, I have a hope in her salvation, even if she is in Purgatory.
Of course, we Catholics can not declare anyone to have made it to heaven or even Purgatory. But my mother received all the sacraments before dying. I also thank Jesus and Mary and Joseph for the mini-miracles of the baptism First/Last Communion on Saturday as well as the fact she took her final breath during the Hail Holy Queen. Most of all, I thank God she died wearing the Brown Scapular. So, I have a decent hope for her in the coming Resurrection—both that of Easter Sunday and that final glorious Return of Jesus Christ.