Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Incarnation - Christ Comes to Us

St. Gregory  Nazianzen
The Marvel of the Incarnation

From a sermon by St Gregory Nazianzen, bishop

The very Son of God, older than the ages, the invisible, the incomprehensible, the incorporeal, the beginning of beginning, the light of light, the fountain of life and immortality, the image of the archetype, the immovable seal, the perfect likeness, the definition and word of the Father: he it is who comes to his own image and takes our nature for the good of our nature, and unites himself to an intelligent soul for the good of my soul, to purify like by like. 

He takes to himself all that is human, except for sin. He was conceived by the Virgin Mary, who had been first prepared in soul and body by the Spirit; his coming to birth had to be treated with honor, virginity had to receive new honor. 

He comes forth as God, in the human nature he has taken, one being, made of two contrary elements, flesh and spirit. Spirit gave divinity, flesh received it.

He who makes rich is made poor; he takes on the poverty of my flesh, that I may gain the riches of his divinity. 

He who is full is made empty; he is emptied for a brief space of his glory, that I may share in his fullness. 

What is this wealth of goodness? What is this mystery that surrounds me? I received the likeness of God, but failed to keep it. He takes on my flesh, to bring salvation to the image, immortality to the flesh. He enters into a second union with us, a union far more wonderful than the first.

Holiness had to be brought to man by the humanity assumed by one who was God, so that God might overcome the tyrant by force and so deliver us and lead us back to himself through the mediation of his Son. The Son arranged this for the honour of the Father, to whom the Son is clearly obedient in all things. 

The Good Shepherd by Philippede
The Good Shepherd, who lays down his life for the sheep, came in search of the straying sheep to the mountains and hills on which you used to offer sacrifice. When he found it, he took it on the shoulders that bore the wood of the cross, and led it back to the life of heaven.

Christ, the light of all lights, follows John, the lamp that goes before him. The Word of God follows the voice in the wilderness; the bridegroom follows the bridegroom’s friend, who prepares a worthy people for the Lord by cleansing them by water in preparation for the Spirit.

We need God to take our flesh and die, that we might live. We have died with him, that we may be purified. 

We have risen again with him, because we have died with him. 

We have been glorified with him, because we have risen again with him.

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Prayer to Mary

To Mary in Praise!

given by the Queen of Heaven to St. Bridgett
taken from St. Bridgett Prophecies & Revelations Chapter 8

Blessed be You, God,
Creator of all things,
Who deigned to descend into
the womb of Mary!
Blessed be You God,
Who wished to be within the
Virgin Mary without burdening her,
and deigned to take immaculate flesh
from her without sin!
Blessed be You God,
Who came to the Virgin,
bringing joy to her soul
and her whole body,
and Who went out of her without sin,
to the joy of her whole body!
Blessed be You God,
who after your heavenly ascension
gladdened the Virgin Mary,
Your Mother,
with continuous comforts
and visited her with Your Consolation!
Blessed be You God,
Who assumed the body and soul
of the Virgin Mary, Your Mother,
into heaven and honorably placed her
above all the angels next to Your Divinity!
Have Mercy on me f
or the sake of all her prayers!

Queen of Heaven, Mother of God St. Bridgett Revelations & Prophesies

The Queen Of Heaven,

Mother Of God
Unstained From Sin

St. Bridgett’s Revelations
And Prophecies


The bride of God saw
the Queen of Heaven,
the Mother of God,
wearing a priceless
and beautiful crown
on her head
and her wonderfully
shining and indescribably
beautiful hair hanging
down over her shoulders,
with a golden tunic shining with
an indescribable light,
and a blue mantle of the
color azure or a clear sky.
When the bride of God, Saint Bridget,
was full of wonder at such a lovely sight, and in her wonderment was standing there totally enraptured and amazed, then blessed John the Baptist appeared to her and said:
“Listen closely to what all this signifies.
The crown signifies that she is the Queen and Lady and Mother of the King of angels;
the hair hanging down signifies that she is an unstained and pure virgin;
the sky colored mantle signifies that all worldly things were as dead in her heart and will;
the golden tunic signifies that she was fervent and burning in the love of God, both inwardly and outwardly.
Her Son, Jesus Christ,
placed seven lilies in her crown,
and between the lilies he placed seven gems.

The first lily
is her humility;
the second lily
is her fear;
the third,
her obedience;
the fourth,
her patience;
the fifth,
her steadfastness;
the sixth,
her kindness,
for she is kind and gives to all who beg of her with love and a will to amend;

the seventh,
her mercy in difficulties,
for in whatever difficulty a man may be in, if he calls on her with all his heart, he will receive mercy and help from her because she is full of compassion and mercy.
Between these shining lilies
her Son placed
seven precious gem stones.

The first gem is her incomparable virtue,
for there is no virtue in any other spirit or in any other body, which she does not have in a higher fashion.
The second gem is her perfect purity, for the Queen of the kingdom of Heaven was so pure that from her first entrance into the world up to the final day of her death, not a single stain of sin was ever to be found in her; and none of all the devils could ever find enough impurity in her to fit on the head of a needle-point. She was truly the most pure, for it was not fitting for the King of glory to lie in any vessel but the purest, chosen before all angels and men and more pure than they.
The third gem was her beauty, for God is praised constantly by his saints for his Mother’s beauty, and all the holy angels and holy souls are filled with joy over her beauty.
The fourth precious gem in the crown is the Virgin Mother’s wisdom, for she is filled with all divine wisdom in God and all wisdom is fulfilled and perfected through her.
The fifth gem is her power and might, for she is so powerful and strong with God in her that she can subdue anything that has been created.
The sixth gem is her clarity, for she shines so clear that she even illuminates the angels, whose eyes are clearer than light, and the devils do not dare to look upon her clarity.
The seventh gem is the fullness of every delight and joy and all spiritual sweetness, for her fullness is such that there is no joy that she does not increase, no delight that is not made fuller and more perfect by her and through the blessed vision of her, for she is filled with grace and mercy above all the holy saints.
She is the most pure vessel
in which the Bread of angels laid
and in which all sweetness
and all beauty is found….
Therefore may you,
her Son’s bride,
honor and praise her
with all your heart,
for she is in truth worthy
of all praise
and all honor with her Son!”
May it also be said of us
let us honor & praise her forever!!!
Holy Mary Mother of God pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death!
Read St. Bridgett's Revelations & Prophesies @


Thursday, 27 November 2014

Advent - Praying with Isaiah

Praying with Isaiah during Advent

The messages from the book of the prophet Isaiah are our guide for the first part of Advent. This page is meant to be a help for our letting these words console us and offer us hope. Though they were first meant to be God's word to a people who "walked in darkness," they are for us today quite alive with meaning. We can hear them personally. 

We can hear their prophetic hope in a future redemption that was fulfilled in Jesus. 

We can let these words challenge us to open our hearts. We can hear them helping us know and trust our God's love for us today. When we let them into our hearts - a phrase at a time - and chew them and let them nourish us, we can let these words feed an Advent hope and longing within us. 

Read them one at a time, or scan several. It is better to enjoy small bits of this message and to savor it, than to run through it, too quickly. Return to this page regularly during Advent. It is a wonderful practice to ask for a grace before we let these words touch our hearts. For example, we might ask something like this:

"Lord, open my heart to hear your word for me today. I ask that you console me, comfort me, strengthen my trust in your faithful love, and that you give me hope in the renewal of your coming in my life this Advent." Or, we might pray: "Lord, show me the desert, the wasteland, within me, and let me trust that you will bring new life and build a path to you, within me."

The quotations are taken from the readings of the first part of Advent. The links are to the full reading for that day.

The First Week of Advent 
The Prophet Isaiah

Why do you let us wander, O LORD, from your ways, and harden our hearts so that we fear you not?
Isaiah 63

Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down.
Isaiah 63

Would that you might meet us doing right, that we were mindful of you in our ways!
Isaiah 63

"Come, let us climb the LORD's mountain, to the house of the God of Jacob, That he may instruct us in his ways, and we may walk in his paths."
Isaiah 2

They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks.
Isaiah 2

Come, let us walk in the light of the LORD!
Isaiah 2

On that day, A shoot shall sprout from the stump of Jesse, and from his roots a bud shall blossom. The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him. ...

Then the wolf shall be a guest of the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; The calf and the young lion shall browse together, with a little child to guide them. The cow and the bear shall be neighbors, together their young shall rest; the lion shall eat hay like the ox. The baby shall play by the cobra's den, and the child lay his hand on the adder's lair. There shall be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be filled with knowledge of the LORD, as water covers the sea.
Isaiah 11

Trust in the LORD forever! For the LORD is an eternal Rock. He humbles those in high places, and the lofty city he brings down; He tumbles it to the ground, levels it with the dust. It is trampled underfoot by the needy, by the footsteps of the poor.
Isaiah 26

On that day the deaf shall hear the words of a book; And out of gloom and darkness, the eyes of the blind shall see. The lowly will ever find joy in the LORD, and the poor rejoice in the Holy One of Israel. ...
Those who err in spirit shall acquire understanding, and those who find fault shall receive instruction.
Isaiah 29

He will be gracious to you when you cry out, as soon as he hears he will answer you. The Lord will give you the bread you need and the water for which you thirst. No longer will your Teacher hide himself, but with your own eyes you shall see your Teacher, While from behind, a voice shall sound in your ears: "This is the way; walk in it," when you would turn to the right or to the left.

The Second Week of Advent

Comfort, give comfort to my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her service is at an end, her guilt is expiated; indeed, she has received from the hand of the LORD double for all her sins.
Isaiah 40

In the desert prepare the way of the LORD! Make straight in the wasteland a highway for our God! Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill shall be made low; the rugged land shall be made a plain, the rough country, a broad valley. Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together.
Isaiah 40

Like a shepherd he feeds his flock; in his arms he gathers the lambs, carrying them in his bosom, and leading the ewes with care.
Isaiah 40

The desert and the parched land will exult; the steppe will rejoice and bloom. They will bloom with abundant flowers, and rejoice with joyful song. The glory of Lebanon will be given to them, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon; They will see the glory of the LORD, the splendor of our God.
Isaiah 35

Strengthen the hands that are feeble, make firm the knees that are weak, Say to those whose hearts are frightened: Be strong, fear not! Here is your God, he comes with vindication; With divine recompense he comes to save you.
Isaiah 35

Then the blind shall see...
Then will the eyes of the blind be opened, the ears of the deaf be cleared; Then will the lame leap like a stag, then the tongue of the mute will sing. Streams will burst forth in the desert, and rivers in the steppe. The burning sands will become pools, and the thirsty ground, springs of water; The abode where jackals lurk will be a marsh for the reed and papyrus. A highway will be there, called the holy way; No one unclean may pass over it, nor fools go astray on it. No lion will be there, nor beast of prey go up to be met upon it.
Isaiah 35

It is for those with a journey to make, and on it the redeemed will walk. Those whom the LORD has ransomed will return and enter Zion singing, crowned with everlasting joy; They will meet with joy and gladness, sorrow and mourning will flee.
Isaiah 35

Do you not know or have you not heard? The LORD is the eternal God, creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint nor grow weary, and his knowledge is beyond scrutiny. He gives strength to the fainting; for the weak he makes vigor abound.
Isaiah 40

Though young men faint and grow weary, and youths stagger and fall, They that hope in the LORD will renew their strength, they will soar as with eagles' wings; They will run and not grow weary, walk and not grow faint.
Isaiah 40

I, the LORD, your God, teach you what is for your good, and lead you on the way you should go.
Isaiah 48

The Third Week of Advent

The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me...
The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me; he has sent me to bring glad tidings to the poor, to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and release to the prisoners, to announce a year of favor from the LORD and a day of vindication by our God.
Isaiah 61

Let justice descend, O heavens, like dew from above, like gentle rain let the skies drop it down. Let the earth open and salvation bud forth; let justice also spring up! I, the LORD, have created this.
Isaiah 45

Turn to me and be safe, all you ends of the earth, for I am God; there is no other!
Isaiah 45

Raise a glad cry, you barren one who did not bear, Break forth in jubilant song, you who were not in labor, For more numerous are the children of the deserted wife than the children of her who has a husband, says the LORD. Enlarge the space for your tent, spread out your tent cloths unsparingly; lengthen your ropes and make firm your stakes. For you shall spread abroad to the right and to the left; your descendants shall dispossess the nations and shall people the desolate cities.
Isaiah 54

Fear not, you shall not be put to shame; you need not blush, for you shall not be disgraced. The shame of your youth you shall forget, the reproach of your widowhood no longer remember. For he who has become your husband is your Maker; his name is the LORD of hosts; Your redeemer is the Holy One of Israel, called God of all the earth.
Isaiah 54

The LORD calls you back, like a wife forsaken and grieved in spirit, A wife married in youth and then cast off, says your God. For a brief moment I abandoned you, but with great tenderness I will take you back. In an outburst of wrath, for a moment I hid my face from you; But with enduring love I take pity on you, says the LORD, your redeemer.
Isaiah 54

This is for me like the days of Noah, when I swore that the waters of Noah should never again deluge the earth; So I have sworn not to be angry with you, or to rebuke you. Though the mountains leave their place and the hills be shaken, My love shall never leave you nor my covenant of peace be shaken, says the LORD, who has mercy on you.
Isaiah 54

The Fourth Week of Advent

Isaiah the Prophet
Observe what is right, do what is just; for my salvation is about to come, my justice, about to be revealed.
Isaiah 56

No more shall people call you "Forsaken," or your land "Desolate," but you shall be called "My Delight," and your land "Espoused." For the LORD delights in you and makes your land his spouse. As a young man marries a virgin, your Builder shall marry you; and as a bridegroom rejoices in his bride so shall your God rejoice in you.
Isaiah 62

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone. You have brought them abundant joy and great rejoicing, as they rejoice before you as at the harvest, as people make merry when dividing spoils.
Isaiah 9

For the yoke that burdened them, the pole on their shoulder, and the rod of their taskmaster you have smashed, as on the day of Midian. For every boot that tramped in battle, every cloak rolled in blood, will be burned as fuel for flames.
Isaiah 9

For a child is born to us, a son is given us; upon his shoulder dominion rests. They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace. His dominion is vast and forever peaceful, from David's throne, and over his kingdom, which he confirms and sustains by judgment and justice, both now and forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this!
Isaiah 9

See, the LORD proclaims to the ends of the earth: say to daughter Zion, your savior comes! Here is his reward with him, his recompense before him. They shall be called the holy people, the redeemed of the LORD, and you shall be called "Frequented," a city that is not forsaken.
Isaiah 62

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings glad tidings, announcing peace, bearing good news, announcing salvation, and saying to Zion, "Your God is King!"
Isaiah 52

Purgatory Insights to Believe and Urgent Plea to Pray for Them!

Purgatory and the Paranormal

I work at a funeral home as a secretary. It is so sad to see the number of people that just sign the papers and say look after the cremation.  There is no goodbye, no service – nothing.  Their reply is ‘they didn’t want anything’.  

Even deceased persons who were Catholic, are not given the Sacrament of the Sick while they lay dying or even a Catholic Mass after they died as their family does not believe in that.  

How many countless souls are there abandoned by their families and friends with indifference, ignorance or unbelief in God!! 

All Soul’s Day A day to remember the Holy Soul's in Purgatory that are going through purification.    Pray for your loved ones, but don’t forget the ones who have no one to pray for them.  

And don’t just pray on the Feast of All Souls – but every day! 

One day we will undoubtfully find ourselves there!

I am currently reading a book on Purgatory called "Hungry Souls: Supernatural Visits, Messages and Warnings from Purgatory by Gerard J. M. Van Den Aardweg, a modern day writing that gleans information from the ages, from writings of the saints as well as quotes from St. Pope John Paul II, and others. I am finding it quite insightful and worth looking into for yourselves to find out more.

The opening lines from Hungry Souls came home to the point of purgatory and the misinformation that is given in some religions as to what happens after death.  Sin seems to be a dirty word nowadays.  To mention sin is to live olden times… that’s ‘old school’ we are told, we don’t believe that anymore... and so on.

Well, I hate to break their fantasy bubble, but PURGATORY IS REAL AND SO IS HELL!
The following are a few quotes from the book (and other information I have come across) that I found interesting, enlightening and helpful.  I hope that you will find that as well.                                                                              --R.M., Blogger             
Maccabees Martyrs
"The teaching of Purgatory goes back through the centuries and even has roots in the Jewish religion.  It is apparent from the second book of Maccabees, that the Jewish people believed in a purification after death which usually lasted a maximum of 12 months.  The fire of purification and that of hell are the same the "Gehinnom" and is often described as burning in a fire.  The sons of the departed were to recite the "kaddish" for their deceased parents for one year; this prayer is thought "to help raise the soul to its ultimate destination in God's presence."

“For those who (at death) find themselves in a condition of being open to God, but still imperfectly, the journey towards full beatitude requires a purification, which the faith of the Church illustrates in the doctrine of purgatory.”  

St. Pope John Paul II
This is how St. Pope John Paul II explains why Purgatory is necessary, for, he continues, we are called “to be perfect like the heavenly Father during our earthly life… sound and flawless before God the Father ‘at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.’ (Thrss 3:12).”

"Purification means atonement for sins and their effects on the soul.  It is not a painless, automatic process of “growing” the soul, of attaining full “self-realization” through the acquisition of ever more insight after death, as is the soothing theory of some spiritualists.  

It is not an accumulation of learning, through a series of “reincarnations”, until some point of perfect wisdom is reached, as in the fantasy of some Western New Age disciples.
  Such are childish attempts to suppress man’s deep awareness that the basic dimension determining his destiny in the new world is not knowledge or experience but moral purity: sin, and the traces it leaves on the soul, versus holiness.

In our culture today, of the three destinations that traditional Christian doctrine teaches may follow death and judgment—Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory—only belief in Heaven or some such happy state has widely survived.  

The prevailing cheap optimism hold that (if there is anything at all across the threshold of death) the life of practically everybody automatically ends up in a state of bliss.  

De-christianed  and inwardly impoverished Western man may acknowledge having his imperfections and shortcomings but doesn’t look upon himself as sinful.  To him, atonement for or purification from sin is a “medieval” idea.

…the truth is that man has to be “sound and flawless before God the Father” when, after death, he appears before Him to render an account of his life.  Only holy souls have direct access to the blissful abode where “nothing unclean shall enter.”  Therefore, “every trace of attachment to evil must be eliminated, every imperfection of the soul corrected.”  The place for this correction of the soul’s imperfections is Purgatory.”

….St. John Paul teaches us that penance and pain in Purgatory are mitigated by the comfort of mercy.  In the final analysis, Purgatory is the mercy of Christ working through his Mystical Body, the Church.” 

St. Catherine of Genoa
“... As far as I can see, the souls in purgatory can have no choice but to be there; this God has most justly ordained by his divine decree.  They cannot turn towards themselves and say: I have committed such and such sins for which I deserve to remain here; nor can they say: Would that I had refrained from them, for then I should at this moment be in paradise; nor again: This soul will be released before me; or I shall be released before her.  They retain no memory of either good or evil respecting themselves or others which would increase their pain.  They are so contented with the divine dispositions in their regard; and with doing all that is pleasing to God in that way which he chooses, that they cannot think of themselves, though they may strive to do so, says St. Catherine of Genoa.  They see nothing but the operation of the divine goodness which is so manifestly bringing them to God that they can reflect neither on their own profit nor on their hurt.  Could they do so, they would not be in pure charity.  They see not that they suffer their pains in consequence of their sins, nor can they for a moment entertain that thought, for should they do so it would be an active imperfection, and that cannot exist in a state where there is no longer the possibility of sin.  At the moment of leaving this life they see why they are sent to purgatory, but never again, otherwise they would still retain something private, which has no place there.  Being established in charity, they can never deviate therefrom by any defect, and have no will or desire, save the pure will of pure love, and can swerve from it in nothing.  They can neither commit sin, nor merit by refraining from it.”
Excerpt above taken from: A Treatise on Purgatory by St. Catherine of Genoa

“...It is furthermore remarkable that the reports of apparitions o souls from Purgatory are highly consistent in the course of the centuries and vary but little from one historical period to another. Purgatory has always been represented as a fierce fire, a burning away of all stains of the soul, regardless of the century or cultural period the apparition took place.  And there is always proof of a twofold suffering: namely the “pain of loss”, which is the soul’s painful longing for God, and the “pain of sense”, which is felt as if the bodily senses were still intact.

St. Faustina
St. Faustina writes in 1926, “I saw my Guardian Angel, who ordered me to follow him.  In a moment I was in a misty place full of fire in which there was a great crowd of suffering souls.  They were praying fervently, but without effect for themselves; only we can come to their aid.  The flames which were burning them did not touch me at all.  I asked these souls what their greatest suffering was.  They answered me in one voice that their greatest torment was longing for God…. (I heard an interior voice) which said, My mercy does not want this, but justice demands it.  Since that time, I am in closer communion with the suffering souls.”

St. Ambrose said that the souls in purgatory pray for the living so that they may recognize their sins.  Apparently, their suffering makes them most keenly aware that holiness is by far the most important boon to implore for the ones they love—it means less suffering in Purgatory and a quicker path to eternal bliss.

Other communications in the past from souls in purgatory say they also pray for temporal needs of the living: for their beloved, their family and benefactors.

St. Bridgett of Sweden
St. Bridgett of Sweden (1303-1373), however, heard from the suffering nevertheless indirectly supplicating Christ’s Mercy for themselves, asking Him to incite the faithful on earth to come to their aid: “We implore Thee for the sake of Thy infinite mercy to turn away Thine eyes from our innumerable sins… Imbue with Thy love the religious, the priests and the faithful, so that they may hasten to our relief by their prayers, sacrifices, alms deeds and indulgences.  They an aid us if they wish; they can hasten our union with Thee O God!”

The Council of Trent (1545 and 1563)   dogmatized what had been believed by the faithful all along.  That although the guilt of a penitent sinner may have been forgiven, that does not mean that automatically all his “debt of temporal punishment” is discharged.  In short, he may have to do penance in order to be purified, whether in this life or in the next: in Purgatory.

The Council also dogmatized that the souls in Purgatory “are helped by the suffrages of the faithful, but particularly by the Sacrifice of the Altar.”

St. Catherine of Genoa’s explanation  of the tormenting flames of Purgatory:  “The greatest suffering of the souls in purgatory, it seems to me, is the awareness that something in them displeases God, that they have deliberately gone against His great goodness… I can also see… that the divine essence is so pure and light-filled—must more than we can imagaine—that the soul that has but the slightest imperfection would rather throw itself into a thousand hells than appear thus before the divine presence.”  Hence “the soul… aware that the impediment it faces cannot be removed in any other way, hurls itself into purgatory… That is why the soul seeks to cast off any and all impediments so that it can be lifted up to God.”

“A fire like that of hell”: in the opinion of St. Thomas, the proper fires of Purgatory and Hell are one and the same –

St. Catherine explains that the difference between hell and purgatory is that the souls in Purgatory will themselves to suffer, the certainty that God has been most merciful to them in the light of what they deserved… that (they) accept the ordinance of God and would not think of doing otherwise.  As well as a certain joy that is never wanting and that, indeed, increases as they come closer to God....

“...Poor souls told Ruth (one of many who have been visited by the Souls of Purgatory) that they are often present around their living family members and beloved without getting their help, sometimes for years.  She transmits their complaints, 
“You in the world have no inkling of what we have to suffer!  Being abandoned and forgotten by those who have been nearest to us in the world: that is most bitter.  Sometimes they stand at the tombs of our decayed bodies and don’t pray for us at all.  They are as if we don’t exist anymore.  God’s justice commands us to be silent.  But we stand at the door of their houses, of our former dwellings, and wait.  We stand there and wait.  Days, years.  We wait for them to give us a small sign of their love by prayer and sacrifices.  But we stay there in vain.  We cry in vain for love.  For help!  Tell them through the priest:  Love should not die at death.  We are still alive and we are hungry for love!!  For your love!”

How can we help the Holy Souls?  Since early Christianity there has been unanimity that offering the Sacrifice of the Altar to the holy Trinity is the most beneficial suffrage for the poor souls… St. Thomas held that only by holy Mass could a soul be definitively delivered from Purgatory.  

Poor souls indeed very often ask for holy Masses; but an expiatory act of high value is also the offering up of holy Communions, even of so-called spiritual Communions.  Furthermore, prayers, alms, all acts of charity and all and every ordinary daily work; all mortifications and sacrifices that are offered to God for the relief or release of the suffering souls…"

Excerpts from Hungry Souls: Supernatural Visits, Messages and Warnings from Purgatory. 


Devotion to the Poor Souls by Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.

"It must seem strange to speak of devotion to the Poor Souls. But it is not really strange. Devotion to the Poor Souls has two sides: our side and the side of the souls in purgatory.

On their side, the Poor Souls are united with us in the one Kingdom of Christ. They can pray and obtain blessings for us here on earth. They are united, as the Second Vatican Council teaches, with the pilgrim Church in the Communion of Saints. 

We are therefore encouraged to invoke their aid, with a confidence of being heard by those who understand our needs. They know from their own experience what it means to carry the cross here on earth.

On our side we are to do everything we can to help the Poor Souls in the Church Suffering. The sufferings in purgatory are not the same for all. They depend on each person's degree of sinfulness. 

St. Thomas Aquinas

St. Thomas Aquinas held that -

the least pain in purgatory 
is greater than 
the worst pain 
in this life....

...What does it mean to pray for the Poor Souls? It means everything that we can offer for the faithful departed
  • We can offer our bodily pains in expiation for their sins.
  • We can offer our spiritual sufferings, our disappointments and fears, our discouragement and estrangement from those we love.

  • We can offer our vocal prayers, like the Rosary, the Memorare, the Angelus, the recitation of the Divine Office.

  • We can offer our mental prayers, like the Way of the Cross, our daily meditation and examination of conscience.

  • We can offer our mortifications, like giving up some delicacy at table, or performance of some unpleasant work.

But the most effective offering
 we can make for the Poor Souls 
is the Holy Eucharist 
at the Sacrifice of the Mass, 
Holy Communion and 
adoration of the Blessed Sacrament....

Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J. recommends that during the month of November, we make a list of all the deceased persons whom we wish to specially remember in our Masses, prayers and sacrifices for the repose of their souls. 

Add to this list as those enter eternity whom you wish to specially commend to the mercy of God. This, by the way, is called a Necrology. Every Catholic diocese in the world has a Necrology of its deceased priests. Every family should have its own Necrology of deceased members whom we daily remember to our merciful Lord.

Every time you say the grace after meals, be sure to add the invocation, "May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen." In every Rosary you recite, do not forget to say after each decade, " O, my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, and bring all souls to heaven, especially those who are in most need of thy mercy."

Remember that devotion
 to the Poor Souls
 is really a covenant 
between them and us. 
We pray and sacrifice for them, 
They can pray and suffer for us. 
They appreciate whatever help 
we give them, to lessen their suffering
 and to shorten their stay in Purgatory. 
They will continue to show their appreciation 
when we join them in a heavenly eternity."

The Museum of Purgatory 
(Museo del Purgatorio)
Little Museum of Purgatory in the Sacred Heart of Suffrage Church, Rome

Do we have any signs to prove that Purgatory exist????

There is a place for which proof or evidence of supernatural origin of the reality of Purgatory are found in the “Little Museum of Purgatory” in Rome.  “They bear the signature of souls who have appeared from Purgatory to ask for mercy, revealing something about themselves and their condition of suffering and doing penance.” 

Documented paranormal evidence to be found in relation to contacts with the dead.  The authenticity of the apparition stories linked to each of the specimens in the museum has been verified by critical priests, theologians, and trustworthy         witnesses.   There are many other examples as well that are not in the museum in which I will give some examples later on...

In Rome at the church named the Sacred Heart of Suffrage there is to be found ten specimens or relics, exhibited behind glass each left behind by their owners who were suffering the fires of Purgatory.  Father Jouet built a chapel in the same site of the present church and founded the Archconfraternity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus for Aid to the Holy Souls.

Face burned into wood (top left)
In November 1897, the altar in the chapel caught fire.  Many people who were present thought they discerned through the flames the face of an anguished person. (pic)  One can see the distorted features of this face on the wall, which was conserved when the chapel was demolished and the present church completed in 1917.  It was the museum’s first “exhibit”.

Display of Objects from Museum of Purgatory in Rome
Father Jouet began to collect testimonies, documents, and objects that could help to incite devotion to the poor souls.  The pieces that are presently in this little museum span over two centuries.  The oldest belongs to an apparition from 1696, the most recent from 1919.  

There has been more documented cases of apparitions of souls from Purgatory in recent times, but they have not so far been added to the collection in the museum.  The specimens shown are from western European countries; Germany, Belgium France, Austria, and Italy.  Pope Pius X and Pope Benedict XV supported and patronized the work of the arch-confraternity founded by Father Jouet as well as the building of the church of the Sacred Heart of Suffrage.

Items showing burn marks from hands of souls in Purgatory
The ‘specimens’ are actual burn marks left on prayer books and other objects of hand prints and even a face.  Of course there are many skeptics that say they are frauds but many conscientious priests and other investigators looked for the truth concerning them.  As well there are well-documented and witnessed evidence by reliable people of the time that these were indeed real cases and real signs of Purgatory...

Excerpts from Hungry Souls: Supernatural Visits, Messages and Warnings from Purgatory.