“He will wipe away every tear.” Revelation 21:4

 

We read and hear countless stories of deceased relatives returning to visit family and revealing healing messages. What might seem like a supernatural myth to many is actually tentatively supported by science, or, at least, by one scientist. Physicist Sir Roger Penrose proposed the idea that human consciousness does live on after death. He claims that death may not be as final as once feared; that humans have souls which can leave the body and live on after death.

Penrose believes that consciousness is just a packet of information stored at a quantum, or sub-atomic, level. He claims to have found evidence that this information, stored in microtubules within human cells, leaves the body after a person dies. He said, “If the patient dies, it’s possible that this quantum information can exist outside the body, perhaps indefinitely, as a soul.”

Fellow scientists, however, regard quantum mechanics as irrelevant to understanding how the brain works. Conventional wisdom currently goes something like this: The theory is almost certainly wrong, but Penrose is brilliant.

I was 3 when my 5-year-old brother, Francisco or “Panchin,” suffered minor burns and then unexpectedly died of shock. My parents, understandably, were devastated, and were also riddled with guilt. In God’s mercy, around a month after he died, Panchin appeared to Papa in a vivid dream. Panchin was levitating, hovering overhead. With affectionate familiarity, Papa tenderly said to him, “Panchin, why did you leave?” The little spirit looked down at him and said, “I’m in heaven, Pappacito.” After a pause, Panchin continued, “I got into heaven through a little window!” This comforted my parents so they were able to go on. They lived to have three more children, one of whom is now a bishop in the service of God. They regained peace of soul, knowing that they now had a little angel up in heaven.

A similar story of a deceased son returning to console a parent is Dolly’s story. She was so grief-stricken at the sudden death of Mathew that she cried uncontrollably, day after day. She couldn’t bear it – didn’t want to accept that he was gone. “How can I stop crying?” she would ask. “I no longer have a reason to live.” This went on until Mathew came to her in a dream. In the dream, Mathew told Dolly that he was in a wonderful place. But, he told her, he couldn’t be at peace with her crying for him all the time. He told her, “I don’t want you to cry anymore.” Dolly listened to her deceased son. She never cried for him again after that. She went on to serve God in church for five more years before she joined her son in death.

A third story of a son’s posthumous consolation comes from Margie. She lost her young son, Manuel. In her dream, Margie saw herself standing next to Manuel. He told her, “Mother, I want you to come with me. I am in a beautiful place, full of flowers.” He knew his mom loved flowers. Margie said, “OK,” and started walking with him on a long path filled with beautiful flowers. They were her favorite flowers and they were perfect. Soon, they arrived at a huge double gate. Margie stopped and told her son, “Wait, I cannot go in, you are dead and I am not. I am not ready to go with you.” She turned to look at him, but he had disappeared.

Terice Richards
Author: Terice RichardsEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Columnist
I am a hospital chaplain with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston. I have been writing professionally since 1981 as a radio and television news reporter, anchor and producer. I earned an M.Ed. from the University of Houston and a B.A. from UCLA. I am a certified teacher for Pre-K through 12th grade and completed the practicum for pastoral care ministry certificate from St. Mary’s Seminary in Houston. I live with my family in Kingwood.