Suicide And The Terrifying Medicine
The suicide of the young priest, Father Evan Harkins, has been keeping me occupied for a while. A suicide is always shocking, and a suicide generally leaves – whatever rubbish some V II priest may have told you – very little hope that the person who committed it escaped hell, for the reasons we all knew when we were three and a half year old, before political correctness utterly ruined our sensus catholicus. I will, therefore, remind everyone that the “heart in the right place” argument, so easily used to play God and feel good at the same time, must be expunged from the Catholic mind.
The sad case of Father Evan Harkins, however, might really be different.
Read here the absolutely terrifying letter written by a religious who witnessed several cases of people treated with the same medicament. The most terrifying period of an otherwise terrifying letter:
Yet another Sister fell into deep depression after being prescribed an anti-depressant for the relief of headaches. After she had been taking it a couple of days, she felt so depressed and suicidal, she walked out of the monastery down the road, with the overwhelming yearning to just end her life.
I realise the medicament given to Father Harkins was a reaction to severe, likely life-threatening, digestion problems, which demanded a robust countermeasure. However, I cannot avoid thinking that there is something seriously wrong with a medicament that can cause such suicidal instincts in those who take it. At the very least, it is fair to say that cases like the one of Father Harkins and the other ones mentioned by the Abbess should be thoroughly investigated by the appropriate authorities and regulators; at the very least, one would think that a thorough and serious warning about the potential side effects and, perhaps, mandatory medical supervision should be linked to the cure. I am approaching sixty years of age, and I did not even know that medicines with such brutal side effects exist in the first place. Truly sobering reading. I am, of course, not God and therefore do not know, but I truly hope that this goes as “not being able to understand what one is doing”, helping our poor Father. Lord, have mercy on him, and on us all.
However, you would rightly accuse me of becoming soft in my old age, if I were to engender the impression that this is just another “let us make our own fluffy religion” post, like you read almost everywhere nowadays. There can be no doubt that in case of suicide – of someone that is not insane, etc. – the probability of hell is just very high; so much so, that the Church thought it appropriate (who would dare, in the West, to do it today?) to prescribe that there should be no burial in consecrated ground, and no requiem mass. It did not mean, of course, that the suicide was in hell. It meant that the hand of cards was bad enough that the Church deemed a scandal to just send the signal that the deceased is quite OK, because “he had his heart in the right place”, and such stuff. For the record, pretty much everyone has his heart in the right place, and every professional assassin loves his children and pets.
I am also told that Hitler was always extremely nice. It gives one food for thought.
Pray for poor Father Harkins. Hope with a sensible, rational hope that a merciful God had mercy on him.
But please, do not nourish the narrative of a God looking at suicide now in a different way than the Church always told us He does.