Nov 2, 2005

Why Pray for the Holy Souls?

Perhaps, there are some Catholics out there who do not know the importance of praying for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. Here are some explanations and excerps from the book 'Read Me or Rue Me: How to Avoid Purgatory' by Fr. Paul O'Sullivan O.P.

We are bound to pray for the Holy Souls.
We are always bound to love and help each other but the greater the need of our neighbour the more stringent and the more urgent this obligation is. It is not a favour that we may do or leave undone, it is our duty, we must help each other... Now who can be more urgent in need of our charity than the souls in Purgatory? What hunger, or thirst, or dire sufferings on this Earth can compare to their dreadful torments?...

God wishes us to help them.
In any event they are God's dearest friends. He longs to help them. He desires most earnestly to have them in Heaven. They can never again offend Him and they are destined to be with Him for all Eternity. True, God's justice demands expiation of their sins, but by an amazing dispensation of His Providence He places in our hands the means of assisting them. He gives us His power to relieve and even release them. Nothing pleases Him more than when we help them. He is as grateful to us asif we helped Himself.

Our Lady wants us to help them.
Never did a Mother of this Earth love so tenderly a dying child, never did she strive so earnestly to soothe its pains, as Mary seeks to console Her suffering children in Purgatory, to have them with Her in Heaven. We give Her unbounded joy each time we take a soul out of Purgatory.

The Holy Souls will repay us a thousand times over.
But what shall we say of the feelings of the Holy Souls themselves? It would be utterly impossible to describe their unbounded gratitude to those who help them! Filled with an immense desire to repay the favours done them they pray for their benefactors with a fervour so great, so intense, so constant that God can refuse them nothing. St.Catherine of Bologna says: "I received many and very great favours from the Saints but still greater favours from the Holy Souls."

When they are finally released from their pains and enjoy the beatitude of Heaven, far from forgetting their friends on earth, their gratitude knows no bounds. Prostrate before the Throne of God they never cease to pray for those who helped them. By their prayers they shield their friends from the dangers and protect them from the evils that threaten them.
They will never cease these prayers until they see their benefactors safely in Heaven and will be for ever their dearest, sincerest and best friends.

The Holy Souls will lessen our Purgatory.
Another great grace that they obtain for their helpers is a short and easy Purgatory, or possibly its complete remission!

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