Thursday 31 October 2013

Annointing the sick - Part 2

I mentioned in a previous post that, after leaving hospital, I wrote to a priest friend of mine living a great distance from me, Father Francis Maple, and told him of my experience.

He replied that I should have had in hospital the Sacrament of Annointing the sick.

I asked my parish priest and he visited me at home and after some prayers he annointed my forehead and hands with oil. He said this Scrament is important because I had been in a life threatening experience.

I did not have much time to discuss this with him.

But what is exactly the Sacrament of Annointing the sick?

When I was young there was something called Extreme Unction. Is it the same?

Does the Sacrament of Annointing the sick forgive all your sins? Like Confession?

If you die do you go to Heaven?

Is it instead of Communion? Say the patient is "nil by mouth" and cannot take Communion?

This led me to thinking. If whilst I was in hospital, fully conscious and waiting to go to the operating theater, a priest approached me to give this Sacrament. How would I have reacted? Would the fear of seeing him there resulted in a second heart attack?

How do we view a priest on such occasions? A sign that this is the end? Would we rejoice that we're leaving having made our peace with God? Or would we fear what is to come?

Does this Sacrament suffice to forgive sins? Or should Confession and, if possible, Communion also be taken for us to be at peace with Our Lord?

I welcome your comments.

God bless.

Vic M

Wednesday 23 October 2013

Annointing the sick

I e-mailed a priest friend of mine, Father Francis Maple, who lives a great distance from me, and told him about my hospital experience.

He replied straightaway and asked if someone in my family had asked for a priest to attend hospital and give me the Sacrament of Annointing the Sick.

No one had. I suppose they were in shock and too concerned about my health.

Father Francis replied that this is very important and a priest should be called at all such emergencies.

I write this here in case anyone needs reminding.

I'm getting slowly better. Thanx again for your prayers. I hope to start visiting your Blogs again soon.

God bless.

Vic M 

Wednesday 16 October 2013






The events in this book are all true. I have omitted a lot of the medical details as they may be upsetting to some readers. I hope and pray that what I write here may be of some help to someone somewhere facing a crisis in their lives.  

At our darkest hour, or at any other time, God is near at hand ensuring that His will be done for us. All we need do is trust Him.


On 27th September 2013 I went to my local hospital for a routine check-up. Nothing particularly serious and I had not been previously ill.

I was all ready, wearing nothing but those hospital gowns open at the back, and waiting my turn to be seen. As soon as the nurse put a needle in my arm to prepare me for sedation I felt a sharp pain in my chest. The doctor was called, they withdrew the needle, and gave me some medication.

I was put on a trolley and wheeled at speed to Cardiac Department. The pain was on and off at various degrees of hurt.

At Cardiac Department they said they’d put in some stents. Routine. No problem.

I was made to lie right down on my back and they took several X rays or whatever photos they take in such cases. I was turned to my left and right side; more photos.

I waited on the trolley. The doctors were discussing my case in Conference. Someone came and told me they were not going to put in stents. I remember a voice saying one artery is totally blocked, two are 95% blocked and a fourth is getting blocked not sending much oxygen to the heart. In effect, it’s a surprise I was still alive.

They shared my X rays with another hospital some 30 miles away via the Internet. The other hospital asked for me to go there.

I was put in an ambulance. In my daze, effects of the injections or whatever they gave me to ease the pain, I could hear voices saying “Have we got the defibrillator? Have got this and that?” And so on.

Apart from the two ambulance drivers, there were four or five other people standing around me at the back of the ambulance as I lay on the trolley. The ambulance drove away at speed with siren blaring and lights flashing. I felt every bump on the road, sudden stop and sharp turns left and right.

We arrived at the other hospital. I was wheeled in and they took several other X Rays or photos.

They decided to operate there and then. I was prepared for the operation and remember being wheeled through several corridors. It was Friday the 27th.

The next thing, someone awakened me in the afternoon of Saturday the 28th.

I had suffered a heart attack and they carried out a triple by-pass surgery.

My timing, or God’s timing to be precise, was perfect. I was at the right place at the right time when I suffered the heart attack. That saved my life.


The next two or three days left me in some sort of daze. I was cared for by an excellent team of doctors and nurses. I was in a room with five other beds – Critical Care Department. By each bed there was a computer on a stand and a nurse or two there at all times. As each nurse left they handed over to another nurse who logged in on the computer and read my progress. Nurses checked me every two hours day and night – temperature, blood pressure and so on. A team of doctors visited at least once a day. 

They tried to get me to eat something but I couldn’t. Eventually I had a couple of spoons of ice cream.

On the third or fourth night after the operation I awoke with a start in the middle of the night. It was just after 1.00 in the morning. I was in a cold sweat. Suddenly I had seen my reality in a dream. There I was lying on my back in bed unable to move my arms or legs or anything. Motionless and wide awake.

All my life I had been very active and self-assured. Able to make managerial decisions at work and provide for my family. Always in control and always planning ahead and prepared for most eventualities.

And now I was lying there motionless like an insignificant squashed insect. Unable to move.

The thought frightened me. The words “insignificant insect” reverberated in my mind again and again. I felt vulnerable. I remembered Paul on the way to Damascus. Powerful leader of men persecuting Christians, when suddenly he was off his horse and blind. Totally helpless, vulnerable and unable to do anything without someone’s help.

In my tiredness I must have switched off.

Half an hour or so later, the same dream, the same awakening in a start. It was about 1:30 am on the clock on the wall behind the nurse standing by the computer at my feet.

Insignificant insect.

And again and again it happened. Just after 2.00am after 2:40am and so on three or four times. It was as if the message had to be imprinted and understood in my mind.

The nurse approached me and said “You’re having a bad time sleeping. Are you in pain?”

I replied “Do you believe in God?”

The nurse certainly did believe. So I asked “Why did I not die? I could have died at my local hospital when first observed. I could have died in their Cardiac Department. In the ambulance on the way to this hospital. On the operating table. Any time. Why did I not die?”

“It is not your time yet!” was the calm reply.

God must want something of me, I thought, as I fell asleep once again.

The following night another revelation repeated itself in my mind. I awoke again and the words “Unless a grain of wheat is crushed …” repeated over and again. Just those few words. I remembered Christ’s words about a grain dying to produce a plant and more wheat. But in my mind only the short unfinished sentence repeated over and again until tiredness took over and I fell asleep.


The following night another dream. I must stress that the dreams did not involve sceneries and people I knew, or various situations like normal dreams. It was just a sentence I could see written clearly in my mind’s eye.

Last night it was “Unless a grain of wheat is crushed”.

This time it was “To know yourself you must get to know yourself.”

What could this possibly mean? The sentence repeated there in my mind until I fell asleep. When I awoke it was still there.

Over and over again the words remained in my mind as I tried to make sense of them.

Eventually, as if someone was explaining it to me, the sentence clarified. Do we really know ourselves? Not our names, our background, family lineage and so on. But do we really know ourselves?

When you meet a new person, a new friend perhaps, you “get to know them” over time. Their likes and dislikes, their views and opinions, their life experiences and so on.

But do we ever “get to know” ourselves? What are our views and opinions based on? Our prejudices even; because we all have prejudices no matter how well we hide them from ourselves. Our views on other peoples’ beliefs, dress styles, hair styles, accents, backgrounds, social standings and so on. What are all our views based on? Are they based on others’ opinions which we follow blindly? Or are they based on well thought out and evaluated criteria, based on right and wrong, based on good wholesome values, based on peoples’ behaviours and actions rather than on their looks.

Basically, what exactly makes us tick? Why do we behave the way we do? Blind prejudice or well thought out opinions based on facts?

“To know yourself you must get to know yourself.”

Who am I? Why did I behave in a certain way in the past? Or thought and acted in a certain way?

Do I really know myself? Now’s the time to get to know oneself.

God certainly know us even if we don’t know ourselves.


My fourth dream was just as strange a day later. Again no sceneries or storyline. Just a sentence there in my mind.

“The dichotomy between our own free will to behave and do as we want and God’s will be done.”

Now this sentence was really strange. For a start, never in my life did I use or would have used such a word as “dichotomy”. I don’t even know what it means. So where did this phrase come from? Had I heard or read it somewhere and now it came to the surface in my mind?

As before, the sentence repeated in my mind making no sense at all as I fell asleep again.

Eventually, as if someone was explaining it to a child, a thought developed in my mind.

We have all been given a free will by God to behave as we wish. He did not create a race of robots following His every wish, but free people able to decide freely for themselves whether to believe in Him and follow Him or not. That is His gift to us.

However, as we “get to know Him” and love Him our free will is, or should be, that in everything His will be done.

Wow … that thought overwhelmed me. It should be my free will to trust Him so much that to accept that in all eventualities His will be done. It’s as if I’m returning His gift of free will to me and saying “thank you, but I trust you so much that I accept Your will in all events.”

No matter whether the outcome of a situation is good or bad. I should accept His will be done in full confidence and knowledge that it will work out for the best. No ifs, no buts, no not withstanding the afore mentioned clause, or any other legalise you may wish to add. 

In all situations we should trust Him so much that we freely accept that His will be done.

The amount of self-control and trust to give all situations totally to God must be really enormous and require great concentration.


It didn’t take long for God to test my new resolve. Again, without mentioning any medical details, a few days later I was lying on my back in bed and listening to medics talking in their own language.

Of course I was frightened. What’s to happen now? But I concentrated as much as I could concentrate, “Thy will be done. No matter the outcome. Good or bad. I trust You. Thy will be done.”

Eventually, all went well.

I heard a thought in my mind, “Don’t forget to say thank you!”

I asked God “Why do You test me so much when you already know how I’ll behave?”

I wonder what He made of my impertinence.


The day finally arrived for me to go home and recuperate. On that morning, at about 6.00am, I felt terrible pains down my spine, across my shoulders at the back and front, and in various places on my chest. I called a nurse.

Again, no medical details, but I was soon surrounded by half a dozen nurses and doctors, all working together to sort out what had happened.

In my pain I prayed “Thy will be done. No matter the outcome. Please make the pain go away.”

Then I asked myself, “Is it OK to say make the pain go away?” Is this not taking back control from God?

Then I remembered that many people asked Jesus to make their pain go away. The deaf, the mute, the blind and the lame. Many people asked for his help and He did have pity on them and healed them.

So it’s OK to ask for help from God and it is not contrary to His will being done.

Eventually the medics sorted me out. They said my timing (God’s timing) was again perfect. What happened to me could well have happened after I left hospital.

I am now at home recuperating. God’s will be done.


I am not saying or claiming that these dreams or messages were from God. They may well have been. I do realise that many people don’t even believe in God and they may well have their own theories and opinions as to the origin or source of these dreams. Some may even mock; in which case I am glad I gave them the opportunity to smile or chuckle.

I believe in God, and I report here just what happened.

At no time in my “near death experience” were there bright lights, visions of angels or saints or dearly departed relatives or friends. Just the dreams as mentioned.

There were not many prayers either. Repetitive Rosaries or other petitions. Just the full knowledge, with all the concentration I could muster, that “Thy will be done”. This, somehow, seemed to suffice.


I would like to thank all the medical staff at my local hospital as well as the one I was transferred to, and the ambulance team, for their professionalism, experience and for looking after me so well.

I would also like to thank family and friends for all they have done, and are still doing, since my ordeal on 27th September. I am also appreciative and thank my Internet friends for all their prayers for me.

God bless you all.

Victor S E Moubarak

NOTE: The above post has been produced in PDF Format as a booklet. If you wish to have a copy FREE which may be of help to someone please contact me at