Praying for the Dead
“In truth we are guilty concerning our brother,in that we saw the distress of his soul,when he besought us and we would not listen;therefore is this distress come upon us.”
As the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches:The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect,which is entirely different from the Punishment of the damned.The Church formulated her doctrine of faith on Purgatory especially at the Councils of Florence and Trent.The tradition of the Church,by reference to certain texts of Scripture,speak of a cleansing fire….This teaching is also based on the practice of the prayer of the dead,already mentioned in Sacred Scripture:”Therefore,[Judas Maccabees] made atonement for the dead,that they might be delivered from their sin”(2 Maccabees 12:45).From the beginning the Church has honored the memory of the Dead,and offered prayers in suffrage for them,above all the Eucharistic sacrifice,so that thus purified,they may attain The beatific vision of God.The Church also commends almsgiving,indulgences,and works of penance undertaken on behalf of the dead.
Do all in your power to relieve and liberate these blessed souls.Remember the Holy Souls year round.One traditional belief is that most souls are released on Christmas Day,not on All Souls Day.By remembering the Holy Souls in your daily prayers during the summer months,you are giving them “Christmas in July”.Pray the stations of the cross for the Holy Souls,especially during Lent.Do this Novena for the Holy Souls prior to Our Lords feast days and major Marian feast days.Offer Holy Mass for them once a month.The Holy Souls never rest.They suffer Day and night.
And what becomes of all the merit of those masses,and other suffrages that are offered for souls which are not in purgatory?No prayer is ever wasted.Our Lord applies them to the souls as He sees fit.
Graciously hear O God the fervent prayers we offer Thee for the Suffering souls in purgatory,who,not having satisfied Thy Justice confide in Thine infinite mercy and our intercessions.Extend unto them Thy consolations,and redeem them,through Christ our Lord.Amen.
Eternal Rest grant unto them,O Lord,and may perpetual light shine upon them.May they Rest In Peace.Amen.
“I will without delay,immeadiately come to the relief of the souls in purgatory;with sons and sighs I will invoke the Lord;with tears I will entreat Him;I will be their advocate by my prayers;I will especially offer up for them,or have offered for them,the Holy Sacrafice of the Mass and the prayers of the Rosary,in order that the Lord,with the eyes of His unspeakable mercy,may look down upon them,changing their desolation into comfort,their misery into joy,and their pains into everlasting glory and bliss.
~Excerpt from “Thirty Day Devotions for the Holy Souls” by Susan Tassone~