BOSTON—Glancing at his watch as the afternoon dragged on, local priest Father Daniel McConnell reportedly admitted Monday that he never knew how to fill the awkward silence that came after he had administered last rites but before the person had died. “Not sure what else to say—um, goodbye?” said the clergyman, who nervously chuckled at the bedside of an elderly man in hospice, twiddling his thumbs before he shrugged at the nurses as if to say “What gives?” when the patient failed to pass on and instead stared longingly at the priest, presumably seeking additional words of comfort. “Time to let go, son. Your Heavenly Father is waiting, and I really want to check my phone without being rude. Maybe I can run through the ceremony once more, if you think that will help? And really stretch it out this time? But if we’re talking hours here instead of minutes, maybe we could put the Celtics game on, just so we’re not sitting here staring at each other like idiots. Or maybe I could leave some of the oil behind and, if you sin again, you could just go ahead and anoint yourself. No one wants you to end up in hell, of course—ha, ha.” At press time, Father McConnell was overheard begging the dying man to at least make an effort to hold up his end of a conversation if he insisted on sticking around.
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