from Beyond (from Hell)
Reality of Hell, Heaven, Purgatory. Life, death
and the last things > Letter from beyond (Hell)
was found among the papers left by a nun who died in a convent in
Germany. It is not completely clear whether this was a vision or just a
vivid dream. It is remarkable that Sister Claire was actually able to
read the letter in the dream; in dreams, the written word is too
visually unstable to read. Also remarkable about the dream is the
orthodoxy of every detail of the letter. Whether or not this is a
private revelation, it is a very poignant meditation on hell.
In my youth, I had a friend, Anne, who lived near my house. That is to
say, we were mutually attached as companions and co-workers in the same
office. After Anne married, I never saw her again. We never had what can
be called a real friendship, but rather an amiable relationship. For
this reason, when she married well and moved to a better neighborhood
far from my home, I didn’t really miss her that much.
In mid-September of 1937 I was vacationing at Lake Garda when my mother
wrote me this bit of gossip: “Imagine, Anne N. died. She lost her life
in an automobile accident. She was buried yesterday in M. cemetery.”
I was shocked by the news. I knew that Anne had never been very
religious. Was she prepared when God called her suddenly from this life?
The next morning I assisted at Mass in the chapel of the convent
boarding house where I was rooming. I prayed fervently for the eternal
rest of her soul and offered my Holy Communion for that intention.
Throughout the day I was unsettled, and that night I slept fitfully.
Once, I awoke suddenly, hearing something that sounded like my door
being opened. Startled, I turned on the light, noting that the time on
the clock on my nightstand showed ten minutes after midnight. The house
was quiet and I saw nothing unusual. The only sound was from the waves
of Lake Garda breaking monotonously on the garden wall. There was no
wind. Nonetheless, I thought I heard something else after the rattling
of the door, a swooshing sound like something being dropped. It reminded
me of when my former office manager was in a bad mood and dropped some
problem papers on my desk for me to resolve.
Should I get up and look around? I wondered. But since all remained
quiet, it didn’t seem worthwhile. It was probably just my imagination,
somewhat overwrought by the news of the death of my friend. I rolled
over, prayed several Our Fathers for the Poor Souls in Purgatory, and
returned to sleep. I then dreamed that I arose at six to go to morning
Mass in the house chapel.
Upon opening the door of my room, I stepped on a parcel containing the
pages of a letter. I picked it up and recognized Anne’s handwriting. I
cried out in fright. My fingers trembled, and my mind was so shaken I
couldn’t even think to say an Our Father. I felt like I was suffocating,
and needed open air to breathe. I hastily finished arranging myself, put
the letter in my purse, and rushed from the house.
Once outside, I followed a winding path up through the hills, past the
olive and laurel trees and the neighboring farms, and then on beyond the
famous Gardesana highway. The day was breaking with the brilliant light
of the morning sun. On other days, I would stop every hundred steps or
so to marvel at the magnificent view of the lake and beautiful Garda
Island. The sparkling blue tones of the water delighted me, and like a
child gazing with awe at her grandfather, I would gaze with admiration
upon the ashen-colored Mount Baldo that rose some 7,200 feet above the
opposite shore of the lake.
On this morning, however, I was oblivious to everything around me. After
walking a quarter of an hour, I sank mechanically to the ground on the
riverbank between two cypress trees where only the day before I had been
happily reading a novel, Lady Teresa. For the first time I looked at the
cypress trees conscious of them as symbols of death, something I had
taken no notice of before, since these trees are quite common here in
I took the letter from my purse. There was no signature, but it was,
beyond any doubt, the handwriting of Anne. There was no mistaking the
large, flowing S or the French T she made that used to irritate Mr. G.
at the office. It was not, however, written in her usual style of
speaking, which was so amiable and charming, like her, with those blue
eyes and elegant nose. Only when we discussed religious topics did she
become sarcastic and take on the rude tone and agitated cadence of the
letter I now began to read.
Here, word for word, is the Letter from Beyond of Anne V. as I read it in
Letter from Beyond
Do not pray for me. I am damned. Do not think that I am telling you this
and certain circumstances and details about my condemnation as a sign of
friendship. Here we no longer love anyone. I do it on the command of
“that power that never desires Evil and always does Good.”
In truth, I would like to see you here where I will remain forever.
Do not be surprised that I should say this. We all think the same way
here. Our will is hardened in evil—in what you call “evil.” Even when we
do something “good,” as I do now in opening your eyes about Hell, it is
not with any good intention.
Do you remember when we worked together for four years in M. You were 23
and had already worked in the office for a half year when I arrived. You
helped me out many times, and frequently gave me good advice while you
were training me. But what is meant by that term “good”? At the time I
praised your “charity.” How ridiculous! You helped me to please your own
vanity, as I suspected at the time. Here we don’t acknowledge good in
anyone! You knew me in my youth, but I will fill in certain details.
According to my parents’ plans, I never should have existed. The
disgrace of my conception was due to their carelessness. When I was
born, my two sisters were already 14 and 15 years of age. How I wish
that I had never been born! I wish I could annihilate myself at this
moment and escape these torments! There could be no pleasure greater
than to be able to end my existence, to do away with myself like a piece
of cloth reduced to ashes, leaving no remnant behind. But I must exist.
I must be as I have made myself, bearing the total blame for how I have
Before my parents married, they had moved away from their country
villages to the city and drifted away from the Church, making friends
with others who had fallen away from the practice of the faith. They met
at a dance, and six months later they were “obliged” to get married.
During the wedding ceremony a few drops of holy water fell on them, just
enough to draw my mother to Sunday Mass a few times a year. She never
taught me to pray correctly. She wore herself out over material
concerns, even when our situation was not difficult. It is only with
deep repugnance and unspeakable disgust that I write words such as pray,
Mass, holy water, and church. I profoundly detest those who go to
church, along with everyone and everything in general. For us,
everything is a torture. Everything we came to understand at death,
every recollection of life and of what we knew, is like a burning flame
that torments us.
All of these memories only show us the horrible sight of the graces we
rejected. How this tortures us now! We do not eat, we do not sleep, we
do not walk with human legs as you know. Enchained in spirit, we
reprobates stare with terror at our misspent lives, howling and gnashing
our teeth, tormented and filled with hatred. Do you hear me? Here we
drink hatred as if it were water. We all hate one another. And more
than anything else, we hate God. I will try to make you understand how
The blessed in Heaven must necessarily love Him, for they constantly
behold Him in His awe-inspiring beauty. That makes them indescribably
happy. We know this, and that knowledge fills us with fury.
On earth, men know God through Creation and Revelation and are able to
love Him, but they are not forced to do so. The believer – I say this
seething with fury – who contemplates and meditates upon Christ extended
on the Cross will love Him. But when God approaches as Avenger and
Judge, the soul who rejected Him will hate Him, as we hate Him. That
soul hates Him with all the strength of its perverse will. It hates Him
eternally, by virtue of its deliberate resolution to reject God with
which it ended its earthly life. This perverse act of the will can never
be revoked, nor would we ever want to do so.
I am forced to add that even now God is still merciful to us. I say
“forced” because even though I willingly write this letter, I cannot lie
as I would like to. Much of what I put on this paper I write against my
will. I also have to choke down the torrent of insults I would like to
spew out against you and everything. God is merciful even to us here in
that He did not allow us to do all the evil we wanted to do while on
earth. Had He permitted us to do so, we would have added greatly to our
guilt and chastisement. He allowed some of us to die early – as is my
case – or permitted attenuating circumstances in others. Even now He
shows us mercy, for He does not oblige us to draw near to Him. He placed
us in this distant place of Hell, thus diminishing our torment. Every
step closer to God would increase my suffering more than every step you
might take toward a fire.
You were astonished one day when I told you in passing what my father
said to me some days prior to my First Communion. “Be sure you get a
beautiful dress, little Anne,” he said. “The rest is all a sham.” I was
almost ashamed then for having shocked you so much, but now I laugh
about it. The best part of this sham was that Communion was only allowed
at 12 years of age. By then, I had already tasted enough of the
pleasures of the world, so I didn’t take Communion seriously.
The new custom of allowing children to receive Holy Communion at seven
years of age infuriates us. We strive in every possible way to frustrate
this, to make people believe that a child is too young to properly
comprehend what Communion is or to think that children must commit
serious sins before they can receive. The “white” host [that is, the
Sacred Host] will then be less damaging than if He were received with
faith, hope, and love, the fruits of Baptism – I spit upon all this! –
which are still alive in a heart of a child. Do you recall that I
already had this same point of view on earth?
I return now to my father. He fought a lot with my mother. I didn’t often
speak of this to you because I was ashamed of it. But what is shame?
Something ridiculous! It makes no difference to us here.
After a while, my parents no longer slept in the same room. I slept with
my mother, and my father slept in the adjoining room, which he would
enter at all hours of the night. He drank heavily and spent everything
we had. My sisters were employed but needed their money to live, or so
they said. So my Mother went to work. In the last year of her bitter
life, my father often beat her when she refused to give him money. With
me, however, he was always very kind.
I told you all about this one day and you were scandalized at my
capricious attitude—but what was there about me that didn’t scandalize
you? – such as when I returned new pairs of shoes twice in one day
because the style of the heel wasn’t modern enough for me.
On the night my father died from a stroke, something happened that I
never told you because I didn’t want to hear your interpretation. Today,
however, you ought to know it. The fact is memorable, for it is the
first time that my true cruel spirit revealed itself.
I was asleep in my mother’s bedroom. She was sleeping deeply, as I could
tell from her regular breathing. Suddenly, I heard someone say my name.
An unfamiliar voice murmured, “What would happen if your father were to
I no longer loved my father after he had begun to mistreat my mother.
Properly speaking, I no longer loved anyone. I only had some attachments
to certain persons who were kind to me. Love without a natural motive
rarely exists except in souls that live in the state of grace, which I
“I’m sure he’s not dying,” I replied to the mysterious interlocutor.
After a brief interval, I heard the same question. Without troubling
myself as to its source, I sullenly replied, “It doesn’t matter. He’s
For the third time the question came: “What would happen were your father
to die?” In a flash certain scenes passed quickly through my mind: my
father coming home drunk, his scolding and fighting with my mother, how
he often embarrassed us in front of our neighbors and acquaintances.
I cried out obstinately: “All right, then, it’s what he deserves. Let him
Afterward, everything became still. The following morning, when my mother
went upstairs to straighten father’s room, she found the door locked.
Around noon they forced it open. Father was lying half-dressed on his
bed – dead, a corpse. He probably took a chill while hunting for beer in
the cellar. He had already been sick for a long time.
Marta K. and you made me enroll in a sodality for young women. I never
told you how absurd I found the instructions of the two directors,
although the games were amusing enough. As you know, I quickly came to
play a preponderant role in them, which flattered me. I also found the
excursions pleasant. I even allowed myself at times to be taken to
Confession and receive Holy Communion. I really had nothing to confess,
for I never paid heed to answering for my thoughts and sentiments. And I
was still not ready for worse things.
One day you admonished me: “Anne, you will be lost if you don’t pray
more.” In truth I prayed very little, and always reluctantly and with
annoyance. You were indisputably right. All those who burn in Hell
either did not pray or did not pray enough. Prayer is the first step
toward God. It is always decisive, especially prayer to that one who is
the Mother of God, whose name it is not licit to pronounce. Devotion to
her draws innumerable souls away from the devil, souls who by their sins
would otherwise have fallen into his hands.
I continue, but with fury, being obliged to do so. Praying is the easiest
thing one can do on earth. God rightly linked salvation to this simplest
of actions. To those who persevere in prayer, God grants, little by
little, so much light and strength that even a drowning sinner can be
raised up and saved, even if he is immersed in mud up to his chest. In
fact, in the last years of my life I no longer prayed at all, and thus
deprived myself of the graces without which no one can be saved.
Here we no longer receive any grace. Even if we were to receive it, we
would reject it with disdain. All the vacillations of earthly life come
to an end in the beyond. In earthly life, man can pass from a state of
sin to the state of grace. From grace he can fall into sin. I often fell
from weakness, rarely from malice. But with death, this fluctuating
“yes” and “no,” this rising and falling, comes to an end. With death,
every individual enters into his final state, fixed and unalterable.
As one advances in age, the rises and falls become fewer. It is true that
until death one can either convert or turn ones back upon God. In death,
however, man makes his decision with the last tremors of his will,
mechanically, the same way he did throughout his life. A good or bad
habit becomes second nature, and this is what moves a person one way or
another in his final moments. So it was with me. For years I had lived
apart from God. Consequently, when I received that final call of grace,
I decided against Him. It was fatal not because I had sinned so much,
but rather because I had refused so often to amend my life.
You repeatedly admonished me to listen to sermons and read pious books,
but I always made excuses for myself, citing a lack of time. What more
could I have done to increase my inner uncertainty?
By the time I reached this critical point, which was shortly before I
left the sodality for young women, it would have been difficult for me
to follow any other path. I felt insecure and unhappy. I had erected a
huge wall that stood in the way of my conversion, although you
apparently didn’t realize it. You must have thought I could convert
quite easily when you said to me once: “Anne, make a good confession and
everything will be all right.” I suspected that what you said was true,
but the world, the flesh, and the devil already had me securely in their
I never believed in the action of the devil, but now I attest that the
devil exercises a powerful influence over persons such as I was
then. Only many prayers on the part of others and myself, together with
sacrifices and sufferings, would have managed to wrench me away from
him. And then only slowly.
I hate the devil, and yet I like him because he and his helpers, the
angels that fell with him at the beginning of time, strive to make you
lose your souls. There are myriads of demons. Uncountable numbers of
them wander through the world like swarms of flies, their presence not
even suspected. Condemned souls like us are not the ones who tempt you;
this is left to the fallen spirits. Our torments increase every time
they bring another soul to Hell, but we still want to see everyone
condemned. Hatred is capable of anything!
Even though I tried to avoid Him, God sought me out. I prepared the way
for grace by the works of natural charity I often did, following the
natural inclination of my nature. At times, too, God attracted me to a
church. When I took care of my sick mother even after a hard day of work
at the office, which was no small sacrifice for me, I strongly felt
these attractions to the grace of God.
Once, in the hospital chapel where you used to take me during our free
time at mid-day, I was so moved that I found myself just one step away
from conversion. I wept.
The pleasures of the world, however, shortly swept me up in a torrent and
drowned out this grace. The thorns choked out the wheat. Making the
rationalization that religion is sentimentalism, the argument I heard at
the office, I cast away this grace also, like so many others.
Once you reprimanded me because instead of genuflecting in church, I made
only a slight inclination of my head. You thought it was laziness, not
suspecting that I already no longer believed in the presence of Christ
in the Blessed Sacrament. I believe it now, although only naturally, as
one believes in a storm, by perceiving its signs and effects.
In the meantime, I had found for myself a religion. The general opinion
in the office, that after death a soul would return to this world as
another being, with an endless succession of dying and returning again,
pleased me. With this, I shut out the distressing problem of the
hereafter to the point that I imagined it no longer troubled me.
Why didn’t you remind me of the parable of the rich man and poor Lazarus,
in which the narrator sent one to Hell and the other to Paradise after
they died? But what good would this reminder have done? I would have
just considered it just more of your pious advice.
Little by little I arranged a god, one privileged enough to be called a
god, and at the same time distant enough that I didn’t have to deal with
him. I made him confusing enough to allow me to transform him, at will
and without need to change religions, into a pantheistic god, or even to
permit me to become a proud Deist.
This “god” had neither a heaven to console me nor a hell to frighten me.
I left him in peace. This is what my adoration of him consisted of. One
easily believes in what one loves. With the passing of years, I became
sufficiently convinced of my religion. I lived at ease with it, without
its causing me any inconvenience.
Only one thing would have been able to bring me to my senses: a profound
and prolonged suffering. But this suffering never came. Do you now
understand that saying, “Whom God loves, He chastises”?
One summer day in July the sodality of young women organized an outing.
Yes, I liked those outings, but not the pious beatas who went on them! I
had recently placed an image very different from the one of Our Lady of
Grace on the altar of my heart. It was that fine manly figure of Max N.
from the nearby office. We had already conversed several times. On this
occasion, he invited me out on the same Sunday that the sodality outing
was planned. Another woman whom he had been dating was in the hospital.
He had noticed, of course, that I had my eyes on him, but I had never
thought of marrying him. He was wealthy, but too friendly with all the
young ladies, in my opinion. Up until then I had wanted a man who would
belong exclusively to me, and I would be his alone. Thus, I had always
kept a certain distance between us.
Max began to shower me with attentions from the day of that outing. Our
conversation, of course, was certainly different from that of your pious
women. The next day in the office, you reprimanded me for not having
gone with you. I then told you about my Sunday diversion.
Your first question was: “Did you go to Mass?” How ridiculous! How could
I have gone to Mass when we had agreed to leave at six in the morning?
Do you remember that I heatedly added, “The good God is not so
mean-spirited as your little priests!” Now I am forced to confess to you
that, His infinite goodness notwithstanding, God takes everything much
more seriously than any priest.
After this first outing with Max, I only attended one more of your
sodality meetings. I was attracted to some of the Christmas solemnities,
but I had already dissociated myself from you interiorly. What
interested me were movies, dances, and excursions. At times Max and I
argued, but I knew how to keep him interested in me.
After being released from the hospital, my rival was furious with me, and
I found her quite disagreeable. Her anger worked in my favor, though,
for my discreet calm impressed Max and ultimately led him to choose me
over her. I knew just how to belittle her. I would speak calmly, seeming
to be entirely objective, but spewing venom from within. Insinuations
and actions like this can rapidly lead one to Hell. They are diabolical,
in the true sense of the word.
Why am I telling you this? To show you how I came to separate myself
definitively from God. To remove myself so far, it was not even
necessary to be entirely familiar with Max. I knew that if I lowered
myself to that too soon, he would think less of me. So I restrained
myself and refused. In truth, I was ready to do anything I thought
useful to reach my aim. I would stop at nothing to win Max.
Gradually we fell in love, for both of us possessed certain admirable
qualities that we could mutually appreciate. I was talented and had
become a good conversationalist, so I eventually had Max in my hands,
secure that he belonged only to me, at least in those last months before
This is what constituted my apostasy from God: making a mere creature
into my god. The way this can be more fully realized is between two
persons of opposite sex, if they have only a material love. For this
becomes the allure, the sting, and the venom. The “adoration” I rendered
to Max became an ardent religion for me.
At this stage of my life I would still at times hypocritically run off
during the office lunch hour to go to church, to listen to the silly
priests, to say the Rosary, and other such foolishness.
You strove, with more or less intelligence, to encourage such practices,
but apparently without suspecting that, in final analysis, I no longer
believed in any of these things. I only sought to set my conscience at
ease – I still needed that – in order to justify my apostasy. In the
depth of my soul I lived in revolt against God. You did not perceive
that. You always thought I was still Catholic. I wanted to be seen as
such, and I even went so far as to make contributions to the church,
thinking that a little “insurance” couldn’t hurt me.
As sure as you were with your answers, they always bounced off me. I was
sure that you could not be right. This strained our relationship, and
when my marriage put some distance between us, the pain of our
separation was slight. Before my wedding, I went to Confession and Holy
Communion one more time, but it was a mere formality. My husband thought
the same as I. We carried out that formality just like any other. You
would call that “unworthy.” But after that “unworthy” Communion I had
greater peace of mind. It was the last one of my life.
Our married life was generally harmonious. We shared the same opinion on
just about everything. That included our opinion regarding children: We
didn’t want the burden. Deep down, my husband wanted one child, but
naturally no more. I was able to remove even this notion from his head.
I preferred fine clothing and furniture, tea with the ladies, automobile
excursions, and other such amusements. And so a year of earthly pleasure
passed from our wedding day until my sudden death.
Every Sunday we went for a drive or visited my husband’s relatives—I was
ashamed of my mother then. My husband’s relatives, like us, swam well on
the surface of life. Inside, however, I never felt truly happy.
Something always gnawed at my soul. I hoped that death, which was
certainly far off in the future, would put an end to this.
When I was a child, I once heard in a sermon that God rewards the good
one does. If He does not reward one in the next life, He will do it on
earth. Without my expecting it, I received an inheritance [from my Aunt
L]. At the same time my husband received a considerable raise in his
salary. With this, we were able to furnish our new house quite well.
Any attachment to religion I might have had was almost gone, like the
last glimmer of light on the far horizon. The bars and cafes of the city
and the restaurants where we ate on our travels did not draw us any
closer to God. Everyone who frequented them lived as we did, concerned
about externals, and not matters of the soul.
Once in our travels we visited a famous cathedral, but just to appreciate
the artistic value of its masterpieces. I knew how to neutralize the
religious air of the Middle Ages that it radiated, and I seized every
opportunity for ridicule. I made fun of the lay brother who served as
our guide; I criticized the pious monks for their business of making and
selling liqueur; I disparaged the eternal pealing of the bells calling
the people to the churches as solicitations only for money. Thus I
rejected every grace that came knocking at my door.
In particular, I let my sarcasm flow profusely at every depiction of Hell
in the books, the cemeteries, and other places, where one could find
devils roasting souls in red or yellow fires while their long-tailed
associates kept arriving with more victims.
Hell might be poorly drawn, Claire, but it can never be exaggerated.
Above all, I always scoffed at the fire of Hell. Do you recall our
conversation about the fire of Hell when I jokingly put a lit match
under your nose and asked, “Does it smell like this?” You quickly blew
out the match, but here no one extinguishes the fire. Let me tell you
something else—the fire that the Bible speaks about is not just the
torment of conscience. Fire means fire. That is just what He meant when
he said, “Depart from Me, ye accursed, into the everlasting fire.” Quite
“How can the spirit be affected by material fire?” you ask.
How, then, can your soul suffer on earth when you put your finger in the
fire? Your soul itself does not burn, but what the man as a whole
In like manner, here we are imprisoned in a fire in our being and our
faculties. Our souls are deprived of their natural movements. We can
neither think nor want what we used to desire. Do not even try to
comprehend a mystery that goes against the laws of material nature: the
fire of Hell burns without consuming.
Our greatest torment consists in knowing with certainty that we will
never see God. How greatly we are tortured by that which we were
indifferent to while on earth! When the knife lies on the table, it
leaves you cold. You see its sharp edge, but you don’t feel it. But the
moment it enters your flesh, you scream with pain. Before, we only saw
the loss of God; now we feel it.
All the souls do not suffer equally. The more frivolous, malicious, and
resolute one was in sin, the more the loss of God weighs upon the soul
and the more tortured he feels for the abused creature. Catholics who
are damned suffer more than those of other beliefs because, in general,
they received more lights and graces without taking advantage of them.
The ones who knew more suffer more than those who had less knowledge.
Those who sinned out of malice suffer more than those who fell from
weakness. No one, however, suffers more than he deserves. Would that
this were not true, so that I might have more reason to hate!
You once told me that no one goes to Hell without knowing it. This was
revealed to some saint. I laughed at that, but the thought was
entrenched in my mind. If this were the case, then there would be enough
time for me to convert – that is how I thought in my heart.
What you said was true. Before my sudden end, I had no idea of what Hell
really is. No human being does. But I had no doubt about this: should I
die, I would enter into eternity in a state of revolt against God, and I
would suffer the consequences. As I already have told you, I did not
change my course but continued along the same path, impelled by habit,
just as people act with greater deliberation and regularity as they grow
Now, I will tell you how my death occurred.
One week ago – I speak to you in the terms by which you measure time, for
judging by the pain I have endured, I could already have been burning in
Hell for ten years. Therefore, on a Sunday one week ago, my husband and
I went for a drive. It was the last one for me.
The day was radiant and beautiful. I felt well and at ease, as I rarely
did. An ominous presentiment, however, came over me as we drove. On the
way home that evening my husband and I were unexpectedly blinded by the
lights of a car rapidly approaching from the opposite direction. My
husband lost control of our car.
“Jesus!” I shouted, not as a prayer, but as a scream. I felt a crushing
pain – a trifle in comparison with my present torment. Then I lost
consciousness. How strange! On that very morning, the idea had come to
me unexpectedly that I could, after all, go to Mass again. It entered my
mind almost like a supplication. My “No!” – strong and determined –
nipped the thought in the bud. I must finish with this once and for all,
I thought, and I assumed all the consequences. And now I endure them.
You know what happened after my death. The grief of my husband and my
mother, my body laid out and the burial. You know all this down to the
last detail, as do I through a natural intuition we have here. We have
only a confused knowledge of what transpires in the world, but we know
something of what concerned us. Thus I know also your whereabouts.
At the moment of my death I awoke from a darkness. I found myself
suddenly enveloped by a blinding light. It was at the same place where
my body lay. It seemed almost like a theater, when the lights suddenly
go out, the curtain noisily opens, and a tragically illuminated scene
appears: the scene of my life. I saw my soul as in a mirror. I saw the
graces I had trampled underfoot from the time I was young until that
final “No!” given to God. I felt like an assassin brought to trial
before its inanimate victim. Repent? Never! Did I feel shame for my
actions? Not at all!
Notwithstanding, it was impossible for me to remain in the presence of
the God I had denied and rejected. Only one thing remained for me:
flight. Thus, just as Cain fled from the body of Abel, so my soul sought
to flee far from this terrible sight.
That was my private judgment. The invisible Judge spoke: “Depart from
Me!” and my soul swiftly fell, like a sulfurous shadow, into the place
of eternal torment!
Some closing words from Claire
Thus ended the letter from Anne about Hell. The last letters were so
twisted as to be almost illegible. When I finished reading the last
word, the entire letter turned to ashes.
What was I hearing? After those harsh notes of the lines I imagined I was
reading, what came to my ears was the sweet reality of bells ringing. I
awoke suddenly to find myself still in bed. The early morning light was
entering the room. From the parish Church came the sound of the bells
ringing the Angelus.
Had it only been a dream? I never felt such consolation in praying the
Angelic Salutation as I did after this dream. I said the three Hail
Marys. And as I prayed them, this thought came to me very clearly: One
must always stay close to Our Lord’s Blessed Mother and venerate her
filially if one does not want to suffer the same fate related to me
here—albeit in a dream—by a soul that will never see God.
Still frightened and shaking from that night’s revelation, I got up,
dressed myself hastily, and rushed to the convent chapel. My heart was
beating violently and unevenly. The houseguests kneeling closest to me
looked at me with concern. Perhaps they thought that I was breathless
and flushed from running down the stairs.
A kindly lady from Budapest, frail as a child and nearsighted, suffering
greatly but lofty of spirit and fervent in the service of God, spoke to
me that afternoon in the garden. “My dear child,” she said, “Our Lord
does not want to be served in such haste.”
But then she perceived that it was something else that had excited me and
made me so overwrought. She added kindly: “Let nothing distress you. You
know the advice of Saint Teresa—let nothing alarm you. All things pass.
He who possesses God lacks nothing. God alone suffices.”
While she humbly consoled me with these words, without any sermonizing
tone, she seemed to be reading my soul.
“God alone suffices.” Yes, God must suffice for me – in this life and in
the next. I want to possess Him there one day for all eternity however
numerous may be the sacrifices I have to make here in order to triumph.
I do not want to fall into Hell.
Reality of Hell, Heaven, Purgatory. Life, death
and the last things > Letter from beyond (Hell)
The Work of God - index