by Rev. Robert J. Hermley
Stories for Life Index
The little girl was afraid of death, and so her mother took her aside.
"Remember the caterpillar we saw in the garden yesterday?" she asked. "I told you that one day soon it would roll up into a little ball and appear to be quite still for a time. And then, from that cocoon a very beautifully transformed butterfly would emerge to fly high and wide and freely anywhere it chose."
Well, my dear, death is similar to that. For a time, we grovel along in this life, held down by earthly cares and desires. It's sometimes difficult to rise above our nature. But, if we ever hope to get out of the caterpillar stage, we must strive to live on a higher plane. We do that by keeping God's commandments and by being loyal to the Church's teaching. That is our road map to heaven.
Then, one day, we die, and if we've been true to God, He transforms us and our soul rises to live in His garden of paradise - and we see Him face to face. There, with Him, we fly high and wide and find happiness forever and ever.
The butterfly is so lucky; it lives twice. And so, dear child, will we.
Never be afraid of death, it is actually a part of living. It is, in fact, the very last stage of living. It is only when one understands the reason for death that we learn to live a free and meaningful life."
"That's a pretty story, mommy," said the child, "I don't think I could ever be afraid of death again."