« EdellinenJatka »
judgment, they are to be preferred to any I have as yet seen, nor do I believe that they could be easily equalled, and much blame, in my opinion, attaches to those who would depart from that order; but since the Rubric gives the Minister the liberty of varying his discourse, and since all persons, especially the sick, are pleased with variety, and, lastly, because these addresses go more home to any one in proportion as they are adapted to his case and condition, it is very convenient that the Curate should, in visiting the sick, at the same time please and be successful in his errand : to accomplish this, therefore, his instructions should be conveyed in divers
forms of address. Fifth Rule.
The Curate should also prepare questions The Curate to be addressed to the sick who happen to be should pre
reduced to extremities; for he will not unaddressed to frequently be obliged to do this with respect
to the sick whose faith, whether it be real and their repentance sincere, he cannot, as far as is desirable, discover, without the aid of many interrogations : Neither is it dissonant to the
pare questions to be the sick. The reason for this given.
nation of the
appointments of our Church to examine, by The examimeans of questioning, into the faith and peni- sick by tence of the sick; for the Church has required such questhat the Curate should interrogate the sick as contrary to to each article of faith, and question him ments of the strictly as to his repentance; nor, further, is opposed to it opposed to the practice of former times ; of former for, according to such practice, the sick person who languishes at the point of death ought to be interrogated respecting various duties. And there exists to this day a form appointed by Archbishop Anselm, which it seemeth good to subjoin.
Quest. Do you rejoice, Brother, that die in the Christian faith?
Quest. Do you confess that you have not led so good a life as you ought to have done?
Quest. Do you confess that you have lived so ill as to deserve eternal punishment ?
A form of questions taken from Anselm.
Quest. Does your inclination lead you to amend, if a longer life be granted you?
Ans. It does.
Quest. Do you believe that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was born of the blessed Virgin Mary!
Ans. I do.
Quest. Do you believe that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died for you?
Ans. I do.
Quest. Do you believe that you cannot be saved but through His merits?
Ans. Yes.—Which being done, let the sick person say, Into Thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.
There is another and larger form of interrogation for the Visitation of the Sick in a little work written by Archbishop Laud, entitled "A Summary of Devotions," and for the benefit of those who possess not that book, I have thought it desirable to append the form I speak of here.
(1.) Have you considered that no pain or disease befalleth any one by chance, and without cause ?
(2.) But that it is sent from God, without whose ordinance no one is afflicted with disease!
(3.) That God, however, is most wise, and that He suffers nothing to happen but what is proper ?
(4.) And, therefore, that the pain or disease now sent to you from God is designed to be profitable to you?
(5.) That God, moreover, exercises towards us a fatherly affection, but that a father, whether he be indulgent or chastises, is still, in either case, a father, and that God never acts with less, and peradventure with greater, love when chastising than when He is indulgent?
(6.) That having for a long time given you good things, He now sends evil things; but that the evil are not sent save for the sake of effecting greater good, namely, that you may return to Him?
(7.) That you ought to be thankful because,
though you have often rejected Him, He has, nevertheless, never so deserted
but visiteth and seeks
out anew ? If these things be so, you ought to submit your will to the Divine Will, which submission, next to the death of Christ, is the most acceptable of all sacrifices to God.
Do you CONFESS,
(1.) That you have not lived so well as it behoved you ? nay, that you have led a wicked life and often and grievously have sinned?
(2.) Have you not some besetting sin? or, are there not some sins which weigh down your conscience, so that an especial absolution would be a beneficial relief?
(3.) Have you any scruples relating to faith or religion?
(4.) Have you, in the bitterness of your heart, reflected upon the past years of your life?
(5.) Do you desire to feel a greater sorrow on their account than that of which you are now sensible? or, if fully sensible, do you rejoice thereat? and if not duly sensible, do you grieve?