Mother of 11 with Cancer.
Thank-you for this update. After months of not hearing anything I was actually wondering how Alicia was doing yesterday. Her family and I were in correspondence earlier this year for a short time. Even with all they had to worry about they still found time to reply to people who made prayer and monetary offerings to their family. That lot would put us to shame in their practice of Christianity.
This just in over the lines:

"Alicia Bradley, RIP

Please pray for the repose of the soul of Alicia Bradley the mother with cancer for whom you were all praying over the past year. She died peacefully tonight — the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe — at home, surrounded by her husband and children.

J. Vennari"
Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us.

I've just received this edifying note:

On Mon, Dec 13, 2010 at 10:59 AM,

Begin forwarded message:

This letter from Michael was written early in the morning. Alicia died, surrounded by her family, on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, December 12. This is so consoling, because this is the apparition where Our Lady particularly shows herself to be our mother when she told Juan Diego, "Do not be troubled or weighed down with grief. Do not fear any illness or vexation, anxiety or pain. Am I not here who am your Mother? Are you not under my shadow and protection?.......Is there anything else that you need?" Please pray for this family to Our Lady that they will find the consolation and strength in the upcoming days and weeks ahead to deal with the loss of Alicia.

We thank you all so very much for your prayers, financial assistance and sacrifices on behalf of this family. We prayed for a miracle, but God saw fit to take her to Himself at this time. I believe the funeral will be on Thursday, but I will forward information when I receive it. May God bless you all.

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her, and may she rest in peace.

Subj: Alicia requiem in pace

Dear Joan:

Tonight at 9:00 pm my wife Alicia died a very holy and peaceful death. This morning she was still with us but, her breathing was short and heavy. She continued this pattern all day. We prayed the rosary at her bedside and we also prayed prayers for the dying this morning. During the day she struggled a few times and I gave her morphine to help with her breathing by trying to relax her.

I thought that she was in a coma today because she never moved from the position that we placed her in this morning. Her hands were very hot as they have been for a while. My neighbor who is a RN came over every night and graciously helped us tend to Alicia. She was a very good friend of Alicia's and we are so thankful for her help. We could not seem to cool Alicia's hand with cool towels and I don't know why they were so warm, but it could be that the tumor was affecting that part of the brain, I don't know.

Tonight I gathered the children to pray the rosary and the prayers of the dying. When I kneeled down and got right up next to Alicia I could see that her eyes were rolled back. We prayed the glorious mysteries this time and on the 4th &5th mysteries I let two of my sons lead the prayers and I stroked Alicia's face and made the sign of the cross on her forehead. When we finished we again said the prayers of the dying. Then I told the children that we were going to say another decade to thank Our Lord for his goodness. We were planning to do an all night vigil so I said let's take a break and I went upstairs to make a phone call. While I was upstairs my son came and got me and we ran down stairs. Alicia was no longer breathing heavy, she was taking short gulp like breaths every 8-10 seconds. So we started to say the Credo because we like to pray in Latin and about halfway through the Credo my neighbor who was there an hour earlier than normal was taking Alicia's pulse and heartbeat. She reached over without saying anything while we were praying, closed Alicia's eyes. I asked if she was gone and she said yes. At that moment my children started crying and my 13 yr old John who was next to me and my 20 yr old son Brendan who was next to John helped me finish the Credo which was very hard. We then said a Pater and one Ave to honor Our Lady's feast day today.

I was trying to keep my composure as now all my children were crying and I looked at my twenty year old son who is in military college and saw the tears in his eyes and we looked at each other and we just knew. That was the most intense experience that I have ever had in my life. My neighbor said to me that it was just beautiful.

Let me also tell you how good and Holy Our Lord and his Most Blessed Mother are. All along I was worried about Alicia making it until Dec 20 so that my son could come home and last night they all made it in.

We had a Crucifix that was blessed by a Bishop of the SSPX for a Holy and happy death and that happened. I live 1 1/2 hrs away from our church and for a while I was hoping that we might have a funeral at a Church that was closer to home , but I only mentioned that to my funeral director several months ago and never actively pursued it. Tonight, during the break that I told my children to take, my sister came in and took me aside and said that the funeral director had a offer from a RC Church that I could use their church for a Requiem Mass with my own Priest. That is why I went upstairs to make the phone call.

My RN neighbor came one hour early tonight and she is the one who told my son to come up and get me. She told me later that something just told her to come over (we know that to be grace).

Now about 2 hrs after Alicia died, my three oldest children and I were talking about how peaceful we felt and we all said that we really didn't feel sorrowful, but just a sense of relief and happiness. My children are certainly sad over the loss of Alicia and so am I, but they did not carry on and wail. They cried and so did I,but we are ready and will move forward when the time is right.

The last thing that I want to leave you with is this and this is what happened to me when we were praying the rosary the last time before Alicia died. While we were praying my son John was holding his mother's right hand and I had my hand under the cover holding her left hand with my right. Her breathing at that time was very heavy and short and as I looked at her mouth I could see her tongue that was dehydrated and swollen and back in her mouth and I thought of Our Lord on the cross. I also thought of her heavy breathing and I wondered if that was how Jesus was breathing because this is the first time I've ever watched somebody die and I didn't know. So as I'm holding Alicia's hand which was hot like I said It seemed that with every breath that she took her hand was pulsing and it felt like your hand feels when it falls asleep and when it wakes up it is all prickly feeling. I was praying and I was feeling this and I was wondering what was going on because I hold her hand all the time and this never happened. I even pulled my hand out and looked at it while we were praying to see what was going on. When I told my children this later on John told me that he saw me doing that and he wondered what was going on. I have no idea.

Our Lord is so very very good. Thank you for your prayers because it is the prayer of the faithful that has wrought such a torrent of grace upon my family and we are humbled and in awe of just how good Our Lord really truly is. God bless you and goodnight.

Thank you for caring for this dear family and remember them in your prayers through Saturday - "just in case" :-)


"Not only are we all in the same boat, but we are all seasick.” --G.K. Chesterton

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