Dr. Gerard Landry's Near-Death Experience
following is one of the near-death experiences, reprinted
here by permission, which Rita Bennett documents in her
To Heaven and Back.
I highly recommend this book especially for those Christians
who are still not sure whether the near-death experiences
are Biblical. Visit Rita Bennett's website
The following experiences will show you they are, in fact,
Dr. Gerard Landry,
an anesthesiologist, worked twenty-seven years in medicine
and had a very good life as a Christian with a wife and
three children up to the time of his heart attack on March
24, 1979. The heart attack resulted in the following NDE:
Suddenly, in a flash,
I couldn't think. At 4:13 p.m., I was transported from the
physical realm, the realm of the body, to a spiritual realm.
I knew I was in another world - a world that is as real
as this world is to anyone reading this. What I saw, I saw
with the eyes of the spirit, because at that time my soul
and my spirit were in heaven. At the time you leave the
flesh, your spiritual awareness becomes acute, because the
flesh holds down your spiritual awareness. At death, your
spirit is released. My experience was supernatural but nonetheless
The first awareness
was of eternity ... When we die everything stops. It is
like finally getting to the nanosecond, where time stops
for us. Like a watch, our body stops at that time. Yet
our spirit and consciousness continue to live on in a dimension
beyond sequential time. We go beyond nanoseconds into a
space-time measurement we cannot know here on Earth. I call
it the eternal now, because that is how it felt to me. The
past, present, and future are all merged into what scripture
calls eternity. Eternity is the present, the now that never
this dimension requires a joining of the human spirit to
the Holy Spirit. As this connection happens, we go beyond
head knowledge to heart experience. Jesus came expressly
to give us this kind of life - eternal life. He told us
about it. He demonstrated it. He imparted it.
Then, as if I had
eyes all around my head, I saw saints, souls that were in
heaven - multitudes. There was no way to count them. Whether
there were millions or billions, I have no idea. As far
as I could see in every direction were people of all sizes
dressed in white robes. The people were transparent; I could
see through them. They were behind me, across from me, all
around me. They were "floating" on what appeared
to be a crystal mirror or cloud or smoke. It is hard to
describe these things in earthly terms, but I am trying
to show you what my spirit saw. Each person was holding
a crown in his or her hand.
The saints were
saying, "We were waiting for you."
I looked at my body
and realized I was one of them. When you look at yourself
and can look through yourself, it is quite an experience.
I was looking at a form of my body.
Then the clouds
seemed to be separating (yet they were not actually clouds),
and Jesus appeared. When he appeared, he showed himself
to me on the cross as if he were in the flesh, still with
his nail-pierced hands and feet, the wound in his side.
To me this signified
that the cross will be remembered forever in heaven and
that the salvation it brings is forever.
If I tried to describe
what he looked like, the color of his eyes and all, my words
would be inadequate. It would be like seeing a picture and
then trying to describe what it was like to experience the
Then Jesus glanced
at me with a look of compassion, full of love and caring.
A glance similar, I imagine, to the look he gave his mother,
Mary, and his friend, John, as they waited in agony at the
foot of the cross. This glance was the essence of love.
I understood the fullness of the love of God at that moment.
This glance must have been like the one Jesus gave Matthew
at the tax collector's table.
Jesus probably just
stopped, looked at him, and said, "Follow me."
I also saw the perfect
obedience that Jesus has for his Father. He obeyed him on
the cross. He died on the cross for us because he loves
his Father and he loves us. In love, he became a servant
for us. All the things I had read in the Bible became real
to me right then.
Jesus spoke with
a voice that relayed the same love his glance transmitted
to me - such gentleness and tenderness. Once you hear it,
you will never forget it.
He welcomed me with, "Gerry,
my peace be with you" - my first name, then peace be
He said, "You
are healed. You will feel no pain. You will have no anxiety.
You will have no fears or guilt from the past. In one week
you will be home from the hospital."
When Jesus said, "You
are healed," I thought, Lord, it is wonderful in this
place. I want to stay.
He also told me
that all the prayers we had prayed that morning would be
answered or were right then being answered.
And he said, "Go
and tell your family, your friends, your fellowship, and
everyone you come in contact with; tell them about my love.
I want you to read the gospel of John, the first two letters
of John, and all of Revelation."
Lord," I said, "Why
do you want me to do this?"
He said, "John
is my friend. He knows all about my love."
I didn't fully realize
what was happening - that my heart had stopped for four
minutes and that I was being brought back to life. When
the Lord finished talking to me, I was aware that I was
back in my body. I then entered a deep coma in which I was
unable to communicate or move any part of my body for more
than ten hours.