Older Catholics remember saying prayers for a happy death throughout their lives. Now we shudder at the thought, avoiding the very thought that we are mortal. We don't prepare for death, we avoid the very thought of it.
That leaves people like me who are preparing a loved one for their journey home to Jesus feeling very alone. Yet in the CCC 1020 we read:
"The Christian who unites his own death to that of Jesus views it as a step towards him and an entrance into everlasting life. When the Church for the last time speaks Christ’s words of pardon and absolution over the dying Christian, seals him for the last time with a strengthening anointing, and gives him Christ in viaticum [a final Eucharist] as nourishment for the journey, she speaks with gentle assurance [in this Prayer of Commendation]"
Thank God for my friend and fellow writer Pat Gohn, who has written this piece on Dying with the confidence of a saint on Catholic Exchange.