Time In Purgatory 


Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich, a great friend of the Suffering Souls, mentions souls that were in Purgatory for centuries.

Padre Pio was asked how long a particular soul would stay in purgatory he replied “At least one hundred years.

Father Rossignoli relates in his Merveilles du Purgatoire. A painter of great skill and otherwise exemplary life had once made a painting not at all conformable to the strict rules of Christian modesty. It was one of those paintings which, under the pretext of being works of art, are found in the best families, and the sight of which causes the loss of so many souls. Soon, however, renouncing this pernicious style, he confined himself to the production of religious pictures, or at least of those which were perfectly irreproachable.Finally, he was painting a large picture in the convent of the discalced Carmelites, when he was attacked by a mortal malady. Feeling that he was about to die, he asked the Prior to allow him to be interred in the church of the monastery, and bequeathed to the community his earnings, which amounted to a considerable sum of money, charging them to have Masses said for the repose of his soul. He died in pious sentiments, and a few days passed, when a Religious who had stayed in the choir after Matins saw him appear in the midst of flames and sighing piteously. “What!” said the Religious, “have you to endure such pain, after leading so good a life and dying so holy a death?” “Alas!” replied he, “it is on account of the immodest picture that I painted some years ago. When I appeared before the tribunal of the Sovereign Judge, a crowd of accusers came to give evidence against me. They declared that they had been excited to improper thoughts and evil desires by a picture, the work of my hand. In consequence of those bad thoughts some were in Purgatory, others in Hell. The latter cried for vengeance, saying that, having been the cause of their eternal perdition, I deserved, at least, the same punishment. Then the Blessed Virgin and the saints whom I had glorified by my pictures took up my defense. They represented to the Judge that the unfortunate painting had been the work of youth, and of which I had repented; that I had repaired it afterwards by religious objects which had been a source of edification to souls. In consideration of these and other reasons, the Sovereign Judge declared that, on account of my repentance and my good works, I should be exempt from damnation; but at the same time, He condemned me to these flames until that picture should be burned, so that it could no longer scandalize anyone.” If such are the consequences of an immodest picture, what then, will be the punishment of the sill more disastrous scandals resulting from bad books, bad papers, bad schools, and bad conversations?

Pope Innocent III died July 16, 1216. The same day he appeared to St. Lutgarda in her monastery at Aywieres, in Brabant. Surprised to see a specter enveloped in flames, she asked who he was and what he wanted. “I am Pope Innocent’, he replied. ‘Is it possible that you, our common Father, should be in such a state?’ ‘It is but too true. I am expiating three faults which might have caused my eternal perdition. Thanks to the Blessed Virgin Mary, I have obtained pardon for them, but I have to make atonement. Alas! it is terrible; and it will last for centuries if you do not come to my assistance. In the name of Mary, who has obtained for me the favor of appealing to you, help me.’ With these words he disappeared. Lutgarda announced the Pope’s death to her sisters and penitential works in behalf of the august and venerated Pontiff, whose demise was communicated to them some weeks later from another source.”

St. Louis Bertrand’s father was an exemplary Christian, as we should naturally expect, being the father of so great a Saint. He had even wished to become a Carthusian monk until he learned that it was not God’s will for him. When he died, after long years spent in the practice of every Christian virtue, his saintly son, fully aware of the rigors of God’s Justice, offered many Masses and poured forth the most fervent supplications for the soul he so dearly loved. A vision of his father still in Purgatory forced him to intensify a hundredfold his suffrages. He added most severe penances and long fasts to his Masses and prayers. Yet eight whole years passed before he obtained the release of his father.

St. Malachy’s sister was detained in Purgatory for a very long time, despite the Masses, prayers and heroic mortifications the Saint offered for her!

It was related to a holy nun in Pampluna, who had succeeded in releasing many Carmelite nuns from Purgatory, that most of these had spent there terms of from 30 to 60 years! Carmelite nuns in Purgatory for 40, 50 and 60 years! What will it be for those living amidst the temptations of the World and with all their hundreds of weaknesses?

Carmelite nuns in Purgatory for 40, 50 and 60 years! What will it be for those living amidst the temptations of the World and with all their hundreds of weaknesses?

St. Vincent Ferrer, after the death of his sister, prayed with incredible fervor for her soul and offered many Masses for her release. She appeared to him at length and told him that had it not been for his powerful intercession with God, she should have remained an interminable time in Purgatory.

In the Dominican Order it is the rule to pray for the Master Generals by name on their anniversaries. Many of these have been dead several hundred years! They were men especially eminent for piety and learning. This rule would not be approved by the Church were it not necessary and prudent.

What will happen to those who neglect the Holy Souls?

ST. ANTONINUS AND HIS FRIEND

St. Antoninus, the illustrious Archbishop of Florence, relates that a pious gentleman had died, who was a great friend of the Dominican Convent in which the Saint resided. Many Masses and suffrages were offered for his soul. The Saint was very much afflicted when, after the lapse of a long time, the soul of the poor gentleman appeared to him, suffering excruciating pains.

“Oh, my Dear Friend, ” exclaimed the Archbishop, “are you still in Purgatory, you who led such a pious and devout life?”

“Yes, and I shall remain there still for a long time, ” replied the poor sufferer, “for when on Earth I neglected to offer suffrages for the souls in Purgatory. Now, God by a just judgment has applied the suffrages which have been offered for me to those souls for whom I should have prayed. ”

“But God, too, in His Justice, will give me all the merits of my good works when I enter Heaven; but first of all, I have to expiate my grave neglect in regard to others. ”

So true are the words of Our Lord: “By that measure with which you measure, it will be measured to you again. “

The Polish Prince

purgatory

“Have pity on me, have pity on me, at least you my friends, because the hand of the Lord hath touched me. ” (Job 19:21).

 

A Polish prince who, for some political reason, had been exiled from his native country bought a beautiful castle and property in France. Unfortunately, he had lost the Faith of his childhood and was at the time of our story engaged in writing a book against God and the existence of a future life. Strolling one evening in his garden, he came upon a poor woman weeping bitterly. He questioned her as to the cause of her grief. “Ah! Prince,” she replied, “I am the wife of Jean [John] Marie, your former steward, who died two days ago. He was a good husband to me and a faithful servant to Your Highness. His sickness was long and I spent all our savings on the doctors, and now I have nothing left to get Masses said for his soul.” The Prince, touched by her grief, said a few kind words and, though professing no longer to believe in a future life, gave her some gold coins to have Masses said for her husband’s soul. Some time after, it was again evening, and the Prince was in his study working feverishly on his book. He heard a loud rap at the door and without looking up called out to the visitor to come in. The door slowly opened and a man entered and stood facing the Prince’s writing table. On glancing up, what was not the Prince’s amazement to see Jean Marie, his dead steward, looking at him with a sweet smile. “Prince, ” he said, “I come to thank you for the Masses you enabled my wife to have said for my soul. Thanks to the saving Blood of Christ, which was offered for me, I am now going to Heaven, but God has allowed me to come and thank you for your generous alms. ” He then added impressively: “Prince, there is a God, a future life, a Heaven and a Hell. ” Having said these words he disappeared. The Prince fell upon his knees and poured forth a fervent Credo ( I believe in God.. “).

~Source Read Me or Rue It

Come to the aid of the Holy Souls and they will return the favor…


“A man of great virtue, when approaching his end, was violently assaulted by evil spirits surrounding his deathbed. Suddenly he saw the heavens opening and thousands of warriors in white garments coming to his aid. They told him that they were sent to defend and to gain victory for him. The dying man was greatly relieved and implored his heavenly defenders to tell him who they were. They replied: ‘We are the souls whom you released. We come to reward your charity and to conduct you to heaven’ ” ~Venerable Cardinal Cesare Baronius

Mary Most Holy Liberates Souls 

“O daughter, you are blessed by the Most High God above all women on earth.” —Judith 13: 18 


Sister Paula of St. Teresa, a Dominican, relates that one Saturday when she had been rapt into ecstasy and transported into purgatory, she was amazed to see that prison transformed into a paradise of delights, with radiance flooding its center, where thick darkness usually prevailed. Sister Paula beheld the Virgin encircled by a throng of angels. To each angel she gave the command to liberate and lead to heaven certain souls who had been especially devoted to her in life.

Reflection: Glory be to you, who are ever ready to assist us in life and death! Lead us to the kingdom of heaven! Rejoice, O Virgin Mary; rejoice a thousand times! Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace.

Divine Mercy Devotion 

The message and devotion to Jesus as The Divine Mercy is based on the writings of Saint Faustina Kowalska, an uneducated Polish nun who, in obedience to her spiritual director, wrote a diary of about 600 pages recording the revelations she received about God’s mercy. Even before her death in 1938, the devotion to The Divine Mercy had begun to spread.The Divine Mercy Devotion involves a total commitment to God as Mercy. It is a decision to trust completely in Him, to accept His mercy with thanksgiving, and to be merciful as He is merciful.

No time in history is our world in need of Divine Mercy than at this very moment.Our world deserves Gods swift and unrelenting justice more now than at any other time in history.Never has evil been so prevelant nor hearts so cold and never has God been more hated,shown more disdain or been blasphemed or ridiculed more than our very day.And yet this good God comes with a message of divine mercy that is infinitely incomprehensible to our weak human understanding.Many Catholics even have a hard time accepting this devotion because it sounds too good to be true,it sounds too easy.However a look back at our catholic history will show us that Jesus and Mary have showered us relentlessly with spiritual gifts and weapons that seemed too good to be true.The love of our Good God for us as St Therese loved to refer to him is foolish and endless,his love for us will not stop.He longs to shower us with his love and mercy and what we give him in return is so little.When Jesus brought us the Divine Mercy Devotion he brought us an enormous treasure that we can’t even begin to comprehend!Listen to Jesus in his own words and really let these sink into your soul:

~I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and shelter for all souls, and especially for poor sinners. On that day the very depths of My tender mercy are open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the fount of My mercy. The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment. On that day all the divine floodgates through which grace flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet. Diary 699 (Note: confession does not have to be done on the Sunday itself. Beforehand is fine)


~Mankind will not have peace until it turns with trust to My Mercy. —St. Faustina’s Diary300
~Let all mankind recognize My unfathomable mercy. It is a sign for the end times; after it will come the day of justice. Diary 848


~He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice... Diary 1146


~Souls perish in spite of My bitter Passion. I am giving them the last hope of salvation; that is, the Feast of My Mercy. If they will not adore My mercy, they will perish for all eternity. Diary965
~My Heart overflows with great mercy for souls, and especially for poor sinners. If only they could understand that I am the best of Fathers to them and that it is for them that the Blood and Water flowed from My Heart as from a fount overflowing with mercy. Diary 367


~These rays shield souls from the wrath of My Father. Happy is the one who will dwell in their shelter, for the just hand of God shall not lay hold of him. I desire that the first Sunday after Easter be the Feast of Mercy. Diary 299
~My daughter, write that the greater the misery of a soul, the greater its right to My mercy; [urge] all souls to trust in the unfathomable abyss of My mercy, because I want to save them all. Diary 1182

~The greater the sinner, the greater the right he has to My mercy. My mercy is confirmed in every work of My hands. He who trusts in My mercy will not perish, for all his affairs are Mine, and his enemies will be shattered at the base of My footstool. Diary 723
~[Let] the greatest sinners place their trust in My mercy. They have the right before others to trust in the abyss of My mercy. My daughter, write about My mercy towards tormented souls. Souls that make an appeal to My mercy delight Me. To such souls I grant even more graces than they ask. I cannot punish even the greatest sinner if he makes an appeal to My compassion, but on the contrary, I justify him in My unfathomable and inscrutable mercy. Diary 1146


~I want to grant a complete pardon to the souls that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion on the Feast of My mercy. Diary 1109
~I desire trust from My creatures. Encourage souls to place great trust in My fathomless mercy. Let the weak, sinful soul have no fear to approach Me, for even if it had more sins than there are grains of sand in the world, all would be drowned in the unmeasurable depths of My mercy. Diary 1059


~I demand the worship of My mercy through the solemn celebration of the Feast and through the veneration of the image which is painted. By means of this image I shall grant many graces to souls. It is to be a reminder of the demands of My mercy, because even the strongest faith is of no avail without works. Diary 742
~ Tell [all people], My daughter, that I am Love and Mercy itself. When a soul approaches Me with trust, I fill it with such an abundance of graces that it cannot contain them within itself, but radiates them to other souls. Jesus, Diary 1074


~I am offering people a vessel with which they are to keep coming for graces to the fountain of mercy. That vessel is this image with the signature: “Jesus, I trust in You.” Diary327
~I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish. I also promise victory over [its] enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I Myself will defend it as My own glory. Jesus, Diary 48


~Souls who spread the honor of My mercy I shield through their entire lives as a tender mother her infant, and at the hour of death I will not be a Judge for them, but the Merciful Savior. At that last hour, a soul has nothing with which to defend itself except My mercy. Happy is the soul that during its lifetime immersed itself in the Fountain of Mercy, because justice will have no hold on it. Diary1075


During the course of Jesus’ revelations to Saint Faustina on the Divine Mercy He asked on numerous occasions that a feast day be dedicated to the Divine Mercy and that this feast be celebrated on the Sunday after Easter. The liturgical texts of that day, the 2nd Sunday of Easter, concern the institution of the Sacrament of Penance, the Tribunal of the Divine Mercy, and are thus already suited to the request of Our Lord. This Feast, which had already been granted to the nation of Poland and been celebrated within Vatican City, was granted to the Universal Church by Pope John Paul II on the occasion of the canonization of Sr. Faustina on 30 April 2000. In a decree dated 23 May 2000, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments stated that “throughout the world the Second Sunday of Easter will receive the name Divine Mercy Sunday, a perennial invitation to the Christian world to face, with confidence in divine benevolence, the difficulties and trials that mankind will experience in the years to come.” These papal acts represent the highest endorsement that the Church can give to a private revelation, an act of papal infallibility proclaiming the certain sanctity of the mystic, and the granting of a universal feast, as requested by Our Lord to St. Faustina.
Concerning the Feast of Mercy Jesus said:

Whoever approaches the Fountain of Life on this day will be granted complete forgiveness of sins and punishment. (Diary 300)

I want the image solemnly blessed on the first Sunday after Easter, and I want it to be venerated publicly so that every soul may know about it. (Diary 341)


This Feast emerged from the very depths of My mercy, and it is confirmed in the vast depths of my tender mercies. (Diary 420)

On one occasion, I heard these words: My daughter, tell the whole world about My Inconceivable mercy. I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and shelter for all souls, and especially for poor sinners. On that day the very depths of My tender mercy are open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the fount of My mercy. The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment.*[our emphasis] On that day all the divine floodgates through which grace flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet. My mercy is so great that no mind, be it of man or of angel, will be able to fathom it throughout all eternity. Everything that exists has come forth from the very depths of My most tender mercy. Every soul in its relation to Me will contemplate My love and mercy throughout eternity. The Feast of Mercy emerged from My very depths of tenderness. It is My desire that it be solemnly celebrated on the first Sunday after Easter. Mankind will not have peace until it turns to the Fount of My Mercy. (Diary 699)

Yes, the first Sunday after Easter is the Feast of Mercy, but there must also be deeds of mercy, which are to arise out of love for Me. You are to show mercy to our neighbors always and everywhere. You must not shrink from this or try to absolve yourself from it. (Diary 742)

I want to grant complete pardon to the souls that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion on the Feast of My mercy. (Diary 1109)

As you can see the Lord’s desire for the Feast includes the solemn, public veneration of the Image of Divine Mercy by the Church, as well as personal acts of veneration and mercy. The great promise for the individual soul is that a devotional act of sacramental penance and Communion will obtain for that soul the plenitude of the divine mercy on the Feast.

(*The Cardinal of Krakow, Cardinal Macharski, whose diocese is the center of the spread of the devotion and the sponsor of the Cause of Sr. Faustina, has written that we should use Lent as preparation for the Feast and confess even before Holy Week! So, it is clear that the confessional requirement does not have to be met on the Feast itself. That would be an impossible burden for the clergy if it did. The Communion requirement is easily met that day, however, since it is a day of obligation, being Sunday. We would only need confession again, if received earlier in Lenten or Easter Season, if we were in the state of mortal sin on the Feast.)

Jesus  asked that the Feast of the Divine Mercy be preceded by a Novena to the Divine Mercy which would begin on Good Friday. He gave St. Faustina an intention to pray for on each day of the Novena, saving for the last day the most difficult intention of all, the lukewarm and indifferent of whom He said:”These souls cause Me more suffering than any others; it was from such souls that My soul felt the most revulsion in the Garden of Olives. It was on their account that I said: ‘My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass Me by.’ The last hope of salvation for them is to flee to My Mercy.”In her diary, St. Faustina wrote that Jesus told her:”On each day of the novena you will bring to My heart a different group of souls and you will immerse them in this ocean of My mercy … On each day you will beg My Father, on the strength of My passion, for the graces for these souls.

I will post the Novena prayers every morning starting on Good Friday so we can all pray it in union with all of the church.Remember the article what if this is your last Lent?Ask yourself what if this is my last Divine Mercy Sunday?As the great Mother Angelica would say:”Don’t miss the opportunity”!

Jesus we I trust in you!

 

St.Gemma Galgani and the souls in purgatory 

St Gemma intercedes for the souls in Purgatory

“….Mention must also be made of the zeal of this child of Heaven in the aid of the suffering souls in Purgatory. If love when it is true has no bounds, certainly hers that had reached the summit of per­fection must have been unlimited. Her zeal for the poor suffering souls was indeed extraordinary. She often offered fervent prayers, together with penances and her immense spiritual and corporal sufferings, for all of the souls in Purgatory in general. At the same time, just as was her way with sinners, she always had some particular soul on her mind for whose relief she was especially interested. “Yes, suffer!” she used to say, “suffer for sinners, and even more so for the suffering Souls, and in a particular way for N … ” (whom she named). And our loving Lord, who likewise ardently desires to draw those holy souls to Himself, moved His servant to an increase of zeal and continually suggested to her new modes of expiation. “The Angel has told me,” she said, “that this evening Jesus will let me suffer a little more for a soul in Purgatory, that is, for two hours beginning at nine o’clock.” That suffering was very great, as she herself confessed: “My head pained me more than usual, and every movement I made was torture.” Heaven accepted the expiation of so worthy a creature, and the pains of those blessed Souls from day to day grew less and their suffering was shortened.


Gemma knew by Divine inspiration that in the Convent of Passionist Nuns at Corneto [Italy] there was a Religious Sister very dear to God who was near death. She asked me about it, and on my answering that it was so, she at once began to implore of Jesus to make that particular Reli­gious expiate all her faults on her deathbed, so that breathing her last she might enter Paradise at once. Her prayer, at least in part, was heard. The Sister suffered greatly and died in a few months. Gemma told those in her home of it in order that they might pray for the deceased, and she gave her name, Mary Teresa of the Infant Jesus, as she was not known in Lucca. After her death, this soul appeared to her full of sorrow, imploring her help as she was undergoing great torments in Purgatory for certain defects.

Nothing more was needed to set all the fibers of Gemma’s heart in motion. From that moment she gave herself no rest; -prayers, tears and loving petitions to Our Lord.

“Jesus, save her,” she was overheard to exclaim. “Jesus, take Mary Teresa to Paradise without delay. She is a soul that is most dear to Thee. Let me suffer much for her; I want her to be in heaven.”

During this time Gemma writes the following in her Diary:

“It was around 9:30 and I was reading; all of a sudden I am shaken by a hand resting gently on my left shoulder. I turn in fright; I was afraid and tried to call out, but I was held back. I turned and saw a person dressed in white; I recognized it was a woman; I looked and her expression assured me I had nothing to fear: “Gemma,” she said after some moments, “do you know me?” I said no, because that was the truth; she responded: “I am Mother Maria Teresa of the Infant Jesus: I thank you so, so much for the great con­cern you have shown me because soon I shall be able to attain my eternal happiness.”All this happened while I was awake and fully aware of myself. Then she added: “Continue still, because I still have a few days of suf­fering.” And in so saying she caressed me and then went away. Her countenance, I must say, inspired much confidence in me. From that hour I redoubled my prayers for her soul, so that soon she should reach her objective; but my prayers are too weak; how I wish that for the souls in Pur­gatory my prayers should have the strength of the saints’.”

And the dear victim of expiation suffered without ceasing for sixteen days, at the end of which God was pleased to accept her sacrifice and to release that soul. This is how Gemma herself told me of it:

“Toward half-past one it seemed to me that the Blessed Mother herself came to tell me that the hour was drawing nigh. Then almost immediately I thought I saw Mary Teresa coming toward me clad as a Passionist, accompanied by her Guardian Angel and by Jesus. Oh, how she was changed since the day I first saw her! Smiling, she drew close to me and said: “I am truly happy, and I go to enjoy my Jesus for ever.” She thanked me again. Then she made sign of bidding me good-bye with her hand, several times, and with Jesus and her Guardian Angel she flew to Heaven. It was about half-past two o’clock in the morning.”

God converted the world through the labors of twelve poor fishermen. And now He continues to save many through the secret tears, penances and pains of humble souls who are dis­carded by the world, and yet are great in His eyes. One of them assuredly was this saintly Virgin of Lucca.”

“My God, open Your heart to me. Oh Jesus, open to me Thy sacramental breast, because I wish to place all my affections there. Oh Jesus, how much I love You! But why do You treat me so lovingly, while I offend You with such countless ingratitudes? This thought alone, if I could but comprehend it, should be enough to turn me into a furnace of love.”

–St Gemma Galgani

The Pardon Crucifix~A forgotten sacramental and thorn in satan’s side 

The History of the Pardon Crucifix

“The Pardon Crucifix was introduced at the Marian Congress of Rome in 1904, with the support of his Eminence Cardinal Coullié, Archbishop of Lyon. It was through the discourse made to him by the Frs Lémann that the crucifix obtained general approval. The project of a union around this Pardon Crucifix was presented to His Holiness by the most Eminent Cardinal Vivès, president of the Congress.

“The historic and sacred inscription of the royalty of Jesus appears in inscription placed over the head of Christ [on this crucifix]. It is an irrefutable witness against the denials and audacity of impiety. There is preserved at Rome, in the Basilica of the Holy Cross of Jerusalem, the actual inscription of Golgotha recovered by St Helen. The written relic is not complete; there may have been a division, and also age has considerably reduced it. Two words, only two words shine forth, respected by time, Nazarenus Re, The Nazarene King. It is a prophecy written on wood: all royalties are passing, except that of the Nazarene.

“On the reverse of the cross, at the center, the Sacred Heart shines forth with two inscriptions recalling the tender mercy of the Saviour; one is a prayer of pardon, breathed forth in the agony of Calvary: Father, forgive them; the other is the prayer of love breathed forth against ingratitude, in the sanctuary of Paray-le-Monial: Behold this Heart which has thus loved men.

“Below, the figure of Our Lady surmounted by a star occupies the foot of the cross, which is truly the place of Mary. She stands there to say to every straying soul: ‘Do not forget the sorrows of your Mother’. She says, ‘I am the comforter’. Despair murmurs that it is too late; She says: ‘between late and too late there is an abyss, behold all the Blood of My Jesus, behold My motherly devotion for you’.”


The Pardon Crucifix comes with powerful graces and indulgences:


~ Whoever carries on his person the Pardon Crucifix, may thereby gain an indulgence.

~For devoutly kissing the Crucifix, an indulgence is gained.

~Whoever says one of the following invocations before this crucifix may gain each time an indulgence: “Our Father who art in heaven, forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” “I beg the Blessed Virgin Mary to pray to the Lord our God for me.”

~ Whoever, habitually devout to this Crucifix, will fulfill the necessary conditions of Confession and Holy Communion, may gain a Plenary Indulgence on the following feasts: On the feasts of the Five Wounds of our Lord, the Invention of the Holy Cross, the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, the Immaculate Conception, and the Seven Dolors of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

~Whoever at the moment of death, fortified with the Sacraments of the Church, or contrite of heart, in the supposition of being unable to receive them, will kiss this Crucifix and ask pardon of God for his sins, and pardon his neighbor, will gain a Plenary Indulgence.

To the faithful, who devoutly kiss this Crucifix and gain these precious indulgences, we recommend to have in view the following intentions: To testify love for Our Lord and the Blessed Virgin; gratitude towards our Holy Father, the Pope, to beg for the remission of one’s sins; the deliverance of the souls in Purgatory; the return of the nations to the Faith; forgiveness among Christians; reconciliation among members of the Catholic Church. By another Pontifical rescript of November 14 1905. His Holiness Pope Pius X, has declared that the Indulgence attached to the Pardon Crucifix are applicable to the souls in Purgatory.

The pardon crucifix is a powerful weapon for us to obtain indulgences not just for us for for all the souls in purgatory.If we assist them with our prayers and the indulgences gained by  venerating this crucifix they will assist us with their prayers.It is highly recommended to wear this crucifix around your neck as it will be a defense against all the devils snares and constantly remind us to invoke its protection and graces often.

To order a pardon crucifix:

Sisters of Carmel

Crown of Thorns Double Novena 

NOVENA PRAYERS FOR THE SALVATION OF SOULS AND THE CONVERSION OF SINNERS

After each invocation say: 

My Jesus, pardon and mercy through Thy Sacred Wounds

O JESUS, Thou didst suffer and die that all mankind might be saved and brought to eternal happiness. Through the Agony of Thine Crown of Thorns I offer it to Thy Eternal Father that Thou wilt hear our pleas for further the grace of final perseverance for the just and mercy on sinners:

My dear parents and grandparents, 

My brothers and sisters and other near relatives, 

My godparents and sponsors of Confirmation, 

My spiritual and temporal benefactors, 

My friends and neighbors, 

All for whom love or duty bids me pray, 

Those who have offended me, 

Those who will offend me, 

Those who have suffered disadvantage of harm through me, 

Those whom I, still a sinner, will offend,  

Those who are especially beloved by Thee, 

Those whose death is near at hand, 

Those who desire most to be united to Thee, 

Those who endure the greatest sufferings and trials, especially spiritual torments, 

Those whose death is most remote, 

Those sinners have no one to pray for them, 

Those who are most deserving on account of their services to the Church, 

The rich who do not need Thee and are thus the most destitute, 

The mighty who spurn Thee, 

The spiritually blind, that they might see their folly, 

The frivolous, who spend their time in idleness, 

The poor, who do not seek the treasures of Heaven, 

The tepid, who devote little time to prayer, 

The indolent, who neglect to perform good works, 

Those of little faith, who neglect the frequent reception of the Sacraments, 

The habitual sinners, who require for their salvation to a miracle of grace, 

Parents who fail to watch over their children, 

Superiors who are not solicitous for the salvation of those entrusted to them, 

Those who strive for worldly riches and pleasures, 

The worldly minded, who fail to use their wealth and talents in the service of God, 

Those who witness the death of others, but do not think of their own, 

Those who blaspheme and commitsacrilege, 

Those who violate the dignity of the human body and mind through impurity, 

Those who sin because of my sins and bad example, 

Those who do not provide for the life hereafter, 

Those whose judgment will be severe because of the great things entrusted to them, 

The pope, kings and rulers, 

The bishops and their counselors, 

My teachers and spiritual advisors, 

The priests of this diocese, 

The priests and religious of the Catholic Church, 

The defenders of the holy Catholic Faith, 

Those who die on the battlefield, 

Those who fight for their country, 

Those who will be buried in the sea, 

Those who are to die suddenly, in accidents and from other causes, 

Those who will die of heart attacks, 

Those who suffer with cancer, 

Those who suffer with AIDS, 

Those who shall die without the last rites of the Church,

Those who shall die within the next twenty-four hours, 

For Catholic apostates, heretics, and other unbelievers, 

For Catholics who hold Masonic membership or in other secret societies, 

For the conversion of the Jews, Thy chosen people of old, 

For abortionsists and those who aid them, 

For women who seek abortions, 

For those who promote or practicre contraception, 

For those who give scandal, especially to children, 

My own poor soul when I shall have to appear before Thy judgment seat.

PRAYER

Final perseverance and pardon grant unto all of these, O Lord; and let Thy graces through these petitions flow unto them and be fruitful. Amen.


NOVENA PRAYERS FOR THE HOLY SOULS IN PURGATORY

After each invocation say: 

My Jesus, mercy and relief through Thy Sacred Wounds

O JESUS, Thou didst suffer and die that all mankind might be saved and brought to eternal happiness. Through the Agony of Thine Crown of Thorns I offer it to Thy Eternal Father that Thou wilt hear our pleas for further mercy on the souls of:

My dear parents and grandparents, 

My brothers and sisters and other near relatives, 

My godparents and sponsors of Confirmation, 

My spiritual and temporal benefactors, 

My friends and neighbors, 

All for whom love or duty bids me pray, 

Those who have offended me, 

Those who have suffered disadvantage of harm through me, 

Those who are especially beloved by Thee, 

Those whose release is near at hand, 

Those who desire most to be united to Thee, 

Those who endure the greatest suffering, 

Those whose release is most remote, 

Those who are least remembered, 

Those who are most deserving on account of their services to the Church, 

The rich who are now the most destitute, 

The mighty who are now powerless, 

The once spiritually blind, who now see their folly, 

The frivolous, who spent their time in idleness, 

The poor, who did not seek the treasures of Heaven, 

The tepid, who devoted little time to prayer, 

The indolent, who neglected to perform good works, 

Those of little faith, who neglected the frequent reception of the Sacraments, 

The habitual sinners, who owe their salvation to a miracle of grace, 

Parents who failed to watch over their children,

Superiors who were not solicitous for the salvation of those entrusted to them, 

Those who strove for worldly riches and pleasures, 

The worldly minded, who failed to use their wealth and talents in the service of God, 

Those who witnessed the death of others, but would not think of their own, 

Those who blasphemed and committed sacrilege without due reparation, 

Those who violated the dignity of the human body and mind through impurity, 

Those who are Purgatory because of me, 

Those who did not provide for the life hereafter, 

Those whose sentence is severe because of the great things entrusted to them, 

The popes, kings and rulers, 

The bishops and their counselors, 

My teachers and spiritual advisors, 

The deceased priests of this diocese, 

The priests and religious of the Catholic Church, 

The defenders of the holy Catholic Faith, 

Those who dies on the battlefield, 

Those who fought for their country, 

Those who were buried in the sea, 

Those who died suddenly, in accidents and from other causes, 

Those who died of sudden illness, 

Those who suffered and died of lingering illnesses,

Those who died without the last rites of the Church, 

Those who shall die within the next twenty-four hours, 

For those who procured abortions or aborted their children, 

For those who promoted or practiced contraception, 

For those who gave scandal, especially to children, 

My own poor soul when I shall have to appear before Thy judgment seat.

PRAYER

Eternal rest grant unto all of these, O Lord; and let the perpetual light of Thine countenance shine upon them soon. Amen. 

 

Encounters with the souls in purgatory


Short stories of Purgatory -A remarkable collection of visits from the souls in Purgatory to various Saints and Mystics.
“I know when you pray for me, and it is the same with all of the other souls here in Purgatory. Very few of us here get any prayers; the majority of us are totally abandoned, with no thought or prayers offered for us from those on earth” (Message from a soul in Purgatory)
St Padre Pio’s visions of the souls in Purgatory


In May, 1922, Padre Pio testified the following to the Bishop of Melfi, His Excellency Alberto Costa and also the superior of the friary, Padre Lorenzo of San Marco along with 5 other friars. One of the five friars, Fra Alberto D’ Apolito of San Giovanni Rotondo wrote down the account as follows:

“While in the friary on a winter afternoon after a heavy snowfall, he was sitting by the fireplace one evening in the guest room, absorbed in prayer, when an old man, wearing an old-fashioned cloak still worn by southern Italian peasants at the time, sat down beside him. Concerning this man Pio states: ‘I could not imagine how he could have entered the friary at this time of night since all the doors are locked. I questioned him: ‘Who are you? What do you want?’

The old man told him, “Padre Pio, I am Pietro Di Mauro, son of Nicola, nicknamed Precoco.” He went on to say, “I died in this friary on the 18th of September, 1908, in cell number 4, when it was still a poorhouse. One night, while in bed, I fell asleep with a lighted cigar, which ignited the mattress and I died, suffocated and burned. I am still in Purgatory. I need a holy Mass in order to be freed. God permitted that I come and ask you for help.” 

According to Padre Pio: “After listening to him, I replied, ‘Rest assured that tomorrow I will celebrate Mass for your liberation.’ I arose and accompanied him to the door of the friary, so that he could leave. I did not realize at that moment that the door was closed and locked: I opened it and bade him farewell The moon lit up the square, covered with snow. When I no longer saw him in front of me, I was taken by a sense of fear, and I closed the door, reentered the guest room, and felt faint.”

A few days later, Padre Pio also told the story to Padre Paolino, and the two decided to go to the town hall, where they looked at the vital statistics for the year I908 and found that on September 18 of that year, one Pietro Di Mauro had in fact died of burns and asphyxiation in Room Number 4 at the friary, then used as a home for the homeless. 

Around the same time, Padre Pio told Fra Alberto of another apparition of a soul from Purgatory which also occurred around the same time. He said: 

One evening, when I was absorbed in prayer in the choir of the little church I was shaken and disturbed by the sound of footsteps, and candles and flower vases being moved on the main altar. Thinking that someone must be there, I called out, “Who is it?” 

No one answered. Returning to prayer, I was again disturbed by the same noises. In fact, this time I had the impression that one of the candles, which was in front of the statue of Our Lady of Grace, had fallen. Wanting to see what was happening on the altar, I stood up, went close to the grate and saw, in the shadow of the light of the Tabernacle lamp, a young confrere doing some cleaning. I yelled out, “What are you doing in the dark?” The little friar answered, “I am cleaning.” 

“You clean in the dark?” I asked. “Who are you?” 

The little friar said, ‘I am a Capuchin novice, who spends his time of Purgatory here. I am in need of prayers.’ and then he disappeared,” 

Padre Pio stated that he immediately began praying for him as requested, and it is not known if he had any further dealings with this particular soul. However, in regards souls in Purgatory it is very interesting to note that later in life Padre Pio once said that ‘As many souls of the dead come up this road [to the monastery] as that of the souls of the living.” Without a doubt, many souls from Purgatory visited Padre Pio seeking his prayers, sacrifices and sufferings to obtain their release.


From the manuscript of Sister M. de L.C., written from 1874-1890

To get an idea of how Purgatory is arranged, we can get a good glimpse of it from a nun from France who had died on February 22, 1871 at the age of 36, and 2-1/2 years later (in November 1873) she began appearing from Purgatory to a fellow nun in her convent, named Sister M. de L.C (name kept anonymous in the manuscript to protect the nuns identity, as the manuscript was published while the nun was still living) as related in the booklet “An Unpublished Manuscript on Purgatory” published by The Reparation Society of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Inc., 2002:

“I can tell you about the different degrees of Purgatory because I have passed through them. In the great Purgatory there are several stages. In the lowest and most painful, it is like a temporary hell, and here there are the sinners who have committed terrible crimes during life and whose death surprised them in that state. It was almost a miracle that they were saved, and often by the prayers of holy parents or other pious persons. Sometimes they did not even have time to confess their sins and the world thought them lost, but God, whose mercy is infinite, gave them at the moment of death the contrition necessary for their salvation on account of one or more good actions which they performed during life. For such souls, Purgatory is terrible. It is a real hell with this difference, that in hell they curse God, whereas we bless Him and thank Him for having saved us. 

Next to these come the souls, who though they did not com¬mit great crimes like the others, were indifferent to God. They did not fulfill their Easter duties and were also converted at the point of death. Many were unable to receive Holy Communion. They are in Purgatory for the long years of indifference. They suffer unheard of pains and are abandoned either without prayers or if they are said for them, they are not allowed to profit by them. There are in this stage of Purgatory religious of both sexes, who were tepid, neglectful of their duties, indifferent towards Jesus, also priests who did not exercise their sacred ministry with the reverence due to the Sovereign Majesty and who did not instill the love of God sufficiently into the souls confided to their care. I was in this stage of Purgatory. 

In the second Purgatory are the souls of those who died with venial sins not fully expiated before death, or with mortal sins that have been forgiven but for which they have not made entire satisfaction to the Divine Justice. In this part of Purgatory, there are also different degrees according to the merits of each soul. 

Thus the Purgatory of the consecrated souls or of those who have received more abundant graces, is longer and far more painful than that of ordinary people of the world. 

Lastly, there is the Purgatory of desire which is called the Threshold. Very few escape this. To avoid it altogether, one must ardently desire Heaven and the vision of God. That is rare, rarer than people think, because even pious people are afraid of God and have not, therefore, a sufficiently strong desire of going to Heaven. This Purgatory has its very painful martyrdom like the others. The deprivation of the sight of our loving Jesus adds to the intense suffering.” 

Another explanation of the levels in Purgatory from this same book:

Retreat, August 1878: “Great sinners who were indifferent towards God, and religious who were not what they should have been are in the lowest stage of Purgatory. While they are there [in the lowest realms of Purgatory], the prayers offered up for them are not applied to them. Because they have ignored God during their life, He now in His turn leaves them abandoned [without the aid of the prayers of others] in order that they may repair their neglectful and worthless lives. While on earth one truly cannot picture or imagine what God really is, but we (in Purgatory) know and understand Him for what He is, because our souls are freed from all the ties that fettered them and prevented them from realizing the holiness and majesty of God and His great mercy. We are martyrs, consumed as it were by love. An irresistible force draws us towards God who is our center, but at the same time another force thrusts us back to our place of expiation. 

We are in the state of being unable to satisfy our longings. Oh, what a suffering that is, but we desire it and there is no murmuring against God here. We desire only what God wants. You on earth, however, cannot possibly understand what we have to endure. I am much relieved as I am no longer in the fire. I have now only the insatiable desire to see God, a suffering cruel enough indeed, but I feel that the end of my exile is at hand and that I am soon to leave this place where I long for God with all my heart. I know it well, I feel more at ease, but I cannot tell you the day or the hour of my release. God alone knows that. It may be that I have still many years of longing for Heaven. Continue to pray; I will repay you later on, though I do pray a great deal for you now.” 

Why is it that I pray for you with less fervor than I pray for others and that often I forget to recommend you? 

Do not trouble yourself about that. It is a punishment for me. 

Even if you prayed more I should not be any the more relieved. God wills it thus. If He wants you to pray more He will inspire you to do so. I repeat again, do not be worried about me. You will never see me in my sufferings. Later on, when your soul is stronger, you will see souls in Purgatory and very awful ones, but let this not frighten you. God will then give you the necessary courage and all that you need to accomplish His holy will. 

Is this not a punishment? 

No, certainly not, I am here for my relief and for your sanctification. If you would but pay a little more attention to what I say. 

That is true but these happenings are so extraordinary that I do not know what to make of them; it is not an ordinary thing to hear you in this way. 

I understand well your difficulty and I am aware of your sufferings on this account. However, if God wishes it and it relieves me, you will have pity on me, will you not? When I am released you will see that I will do far more for you than you have ever done for me. I already pray much for you.

Where is Sister –?

In the lowest Purgatory, where she receives no benefit from anyone’s prayers. God is often displeased, if one may speak thus, when many religious come to die, because He has called these souls to Himself that they might serve Him faithfully on earth and go straight to Heaven at the moment of death, but because of their infidelity, they have to stay long in Purgatory – far longer than people in the world who have not had so many graces.

1879, Retreat in September. We see St. Michael as we see the angels. He has no body. He comes to get the souls that have finished their purification. It is he who conducts them to Heaven. He is among the Seraphim as Monsignor said. He is the highest angel in Heaven. Our own Guardian Angels come to see us but St. Michael is far more beautiful than they are. As to the Blessed Virgin, we see her in the body. She comes to Purgatory on her feasts and she goes back to Heaven with many souls. While she is with us we do not suffer. St. Michael accompanies her. When he comes alone, we suffer as usual. When I spoke to you of the great and the second Purgatory, it was to try to make you understand that there are different stages in Purgatory. Thus I call that stage of Purgatory “great” or “worst” where the most guilty souls are, and where I stayed for two years without being able to give a sign of the torments I was suffering. The year when you heard me groaning, when I began to speak to you, I was still in the same place.

In the second Purgatory, which is still Purgatory but very different from the first, one suffers a great deal, but less than in the great place of expiation. Then there is a third stage, which is the Purgatory of desire, where there is no fire. The souls who did not desire Heaven ardently enough, who did not love God sufficiently, are there. It is there that I am at this moment. Further, in these three parts of Purgatory, there are many degrees of variation. Little by little, as the soul becomes purified, her sufferings are changed.

You sometimes say to me that the perfecting of a soul is a long process and you are also astonished that after so many prayers, I am so long deprived of the sight of God. Alas, the perfecting of a soul does not take any less time in Purgatory than upon earth. There are a number of souls, but they are very few, who have only a few venial sins to expiate. These do not stay long in Purgatory. A few well-said prayers, a few sacrifices soon deliver them. But when there are souls like mine – and that is nearly all whose lives have been so empty and who paid little or no attention to their salvation – then their whole life has to be begun over again in this place of expiation. The soul has to perfect itself and love and desire Him, whom it did not love sufficiently on earth. This is the reason why the deliverance of some souls is delayed. God has given me a very great grace in allowing me to ask for prayers. I did not deserve it, but without this I would have remained like most of those here, for years and years more.”

The immense power of the Mass for the souls in Purgatory


Next, from the excellent book “Purgatory –Explained by the Lives and Legends of the Saints” by Father F.X. Schouppe, S.J., Tan Books, 1986 we read the following accounts which highlight the power and importance of offering holy Masses for the departed. The following is a sincere testimony from the person who experienced several visits from a soul in purgatory, and thus she provides a detailed and frank eye-witness account with regard to the facts: 

On October 13, 1849, there died at the age of fifty-two, in the parish of Ardoye, in Flanders, a woman named Eugenie Van de Kerckove, whose husband, John Wybo, was a farmer. She was a pious and charitable woman who generously gave to charity in proportionate to her means. She had, to the end of her life, a great devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, and abstained from meat in her honor on the Friday and Saturday of each week. Although her conduct was not free from certain faults, she otherwise led a exemplary and edifying life. 

Eugenie had a servant named Barbara Vennecke, aged twenty-eight, who was known as a virtuous and devoted girl, and who had assisted her mistress in her last sickness, and after Eugenie’s death, she continued to serve her master, John Wybo, the widower of Eugenie. 

About three weeks after her death, the deceased appeared to her servant under circumstances which we will now relate. It was in the middle of the night; Barbara slept soundly, when she heard herself called distinctly three times by her name. She awoke with a start, and saw Eugenie before her, sitting on the side of her bed, clad in a working dress, consisting of a skirt and short jacket. At this remarkable sight, Barbara was seized with astonishment. The apparition spoke to her: “Barbara,” she said, simply pronouncing her name. “What do you desire, Eugenie?” replied the servant. 

‘Please take,” said the mistress, “the little rake which I often told you to put in its place; stir the heap of sand in the little room; you know to which one I refer. You will find there 500 franks; use it to have Masses said, two francs for each Mass, for my intention, for I am still suffering.” “I will do so, Eugenie,” replied Barbara, and at the same moment the apparition vanished. After awhile she fell asleep again, and reposed quietly until morning: 

On awaking, Barbara thought that maybe it was all just a dream, but yet she had been so deeply impressed, so wide awake, she had seen her old mistress in a form so distinct, so full of life and she had received from her lips such precise directions, that she could not help saying, “This cannot have been a dream. I saw my mistress in person; she presented herself to my eyes and she surely spoke to me. It is no dream, but a reality.” 

She therefore immediately went and took the rake as directed, stirred the sand, and drew out a purse containing the sum of five hundred francs. 

In such strange and extraordinary circumstances the good girl thought it her duty to seek the advice of her pastor before spending the 500 francs on having Masses said, and went to relate to him all that had happened. The venerable Abbe R., then parish priest of Ardoye, replied that the Masses asked by the departed soul absolutely must be celebrated, but, in order to dispose of the sum of money, the consent of the husband, John Wybo, was necessary, since the money was found in his house. The latter willingly consented that the money should be employed for so holy a purpose, and the Masses were celebrated, being given two francs for each Mass. 

We call attention to the circumstance of the Mass donations, because it corresponded with the pious custom of the deceased. The fee for a Mass fixed by the diocese at that time was a franc and a half, but during her lifetime Eugenie-through consideration and charity for the clergy, many of whom were quite poor- always gave two francs for each Mass that she made offerings for. Thus the extra 1/2 a frank Mass offering that she normally made was an act of charity and additional financial support for the priests who celebrated them. 

Two months after the first apparition, while Masses were still being said for Eugenie’s intentions, Barbara was again awakened during the night. This time her chamber was illuminated with a bright light, and her mistress appeared before her with a radiant smile, beautiful and fresh in appearance as in the days of her youth, and was dressed in a robe of dazzling whiteness—“Barbara,” she said in a clear voice, “I thank you! For I am now delivered from the place of purification.’ Saying these words, she disappeared, and the chamber became dark as before. 

The servant, amazed at what she had just seen, was full of joy, and she soon spread the remarkable story to everyone about the town . This apparition made the most lively impression upon her mind, and she preserves to this day the most consoling remembrance of it. It is from her that we have these details, through the favor of the venerable Abbe L., who was curate at Ardoye when these facts occurred. 

This is but one of the many stories in regards to the power and efficacy of the Holy Mass wherein the Son of God Himself offers Himself upon the altar for the forgiveness of our sins, for it is a fact that of all that we can do in favor of the souls in Purgatory, there is nothing more powerful and precious than the offering of immolation of our Divine Saviour upon the altar. Besides being the express doctrine of the Church as manifested in her Councils, there are many miraculous facts, properly authenticated, which leave no room for doubt in regard to this point. 

In evidence to this we now provide another incident, related by the historian Ferdinand of Castile. From 1324-1327 there was at Cologne two Dominican Religious of distinguished talent, one of whom was Blessed Henry Suso (1295-1366). They shared the same studies, the same kind of life, and above all the same desire for sanctity, which had caused them to form an close friendship. 

When they had finished their studies, seeing that they were about to be separated to return each one to his own convent, they agreed and promised one another that the first of the two who should die should be assisted by the other for a whole year by the celebration of two Masses each week–on Monday a Mass of Requiem, as was customary, and on Friday that of the Passion, in so far as the Rubrics would permit. They promised each other that they would do this, gave each other the kiss of peace, and left Cologne. 

For several years they both continued to serve God with the most edifying fervor. The priest religious whose name is not mentioned was the first to be called away, and Father Suso received the news with sentiments of resignation to the Divine will. As to the contract they had made, time had caused him to forget it. However, he prayed much for his friend, imposing new penances upon himself and many other good works, but he did not think of offering the Masses which he had promised a number of years previously. 

One morning, while meditating in retirement in the chapel, he suddenly saw appear before him the soul of his departed friend, who, regarding him with tenderness, reproached him with having been unfaithful to his word from which he had a perfect right to rely upon with confidence. Blessed Suso, surprised, excused his forgetfulness by relating the many prayers and mortifications which he had offered, and still continued to offer, for his friend, whose salvation was as dear to him as his own. 

“Is it possible, my dear brother;’ he added, “that so many prayers and good works which I have offered to God do not suffice for you?” “Oh no,” dear brother, replied the suffering soul, “these are not yet sufficient. It is the Blood of Jesus Christ that is needed to extinguish the flames by which I am consumed; it is the Holy Sacrifice which will deliver me from these frightful torments. I implore you to keep your word, and refuse me not that which in justice you owe me.” 


Blessed Suso hastened to respond to the appeal of the suffering soul; he contacted as many priests as possible and urged them to say Masses for his friends intentions and, to repair his fault, he celebrated, and caused to be celebrated, a large number of Masses that very same day. On the following day several priests, at the request of Father Suso, united with him in offering the Holy Sacrifice for the deceased, and he continued his act of charity for several days. 

After a short time the priest friend of Suso again appeared to him, but now in a very different condition; his countenance was joyful, and he was surrounded with beautiful light. “Thanks be to you, my dear friend” he said “behold, by the Blood of my Saviour I am delivered from my sufferings. I am now going to Heaven to contemplate Him whom we so often adored together under the Eucharistic veil.” 

Afterwards, Blessed Suso prostrated himself to ‘thank the God of infinite mercy, because he now understood more than ever the inestimable value of the Mass.’ 

Eugenie von der Leyen

Modern apparitions to Eugenie von der Leyen (1867-1929)


As to Saints and Blesseds, so far we have shared stories from St Padre Pio and Blessed Henry Suso. But there are many more canonized Saints who have been great helpers of the suffering souls. The most well known and recognized are St John Macias (who was known to have released literally thousands of souls from Purgatory during his holy lifetime), St. Augustine, St. Dominic, St. Francis Xavier, St. Victor, St. Francis of Assisi, St. Nicolas of Tolentino, St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, St. Catherine of Genoa, St. Bernard of Clairvaux, St. Gregory the Great, St. Odilon of Cluny, St. Francesca Romana, St. Bridget of Sweden, St. Ambrose, St. Bonaventure, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Efraim, St. Peter Damian, St. Francis de Sales, St. Catherine of Genoa, and in modern times the recently canonized saints Gemma Galgani, St. Padre Pio, and St Faustina Kowalska, to name but a few.

Since many of the stories of Purgatory from the above mentioned Saints are well known, the emphasis here is to provide the lesser known and nonetheless fascinating stories from sources and individuals not widely known or read, because in His infinite mercy, history is full of “everyday” persons whom on occasion God has permitted to assist the souls in Purgatory. I will say however that the one notable thing about such occurrences is that seers of souls from Purgatory are often reported to be especially good and pious persons, which is logical, for God permits a soul to appear so that it can be released from Purgatory, or at least, that its suffering be greatly lessened, and a pious, compassionate person is more likely to respond to its requests by the offering of fervent sacrifices, sufferings and prayers which are the means which help the poor souls. In other words, such souls are “saintly” persons, without of course ever becoming canonized Saints.

One such soul is Eugenie von der Leyen (1867-1929) who kept a diary of the appearances of the souls in Purgatory to her. Eugenie was a well educated woman of high German nobility; in fact Eugenie bore the title of princess and lived in the ancestral castle at Waal, Bavaria, Germany. By order of her confessor, she kept diary of her contacts with the poor souls, which after her death was handed over to Bishop Eugenio Pacelli, who later became Pope Pius XII.

The Shepherd named Fritz –From the diary of Eugenie von der Leyen, 1923


June 11, 1923. At awakening, a long grayish form over me, completely nebulous; I can’t say whether man or woman, but unsympathetic; I am very frightened. 

June 14. The phantom was already in my room when I wanted to sleep. Then I said my evening-prayer aloud, during which it came very near to me. If it hadn’t been for his arms, it rather would seem a walking tree-trunk. It stayed perhaps twenty minutes, then came back at four o’clock. 

June 16. It was very bad. It shook my shoulder. That is a horrible moment. I struck him and said: “You may not touch me!” Whereupon it withdrew in a corner. At my push, I didn’t feel a body, it was like a humid, warm towel. I believed I couldn’t stand such terror any longer. 

June 18. Again this horrible thing; it wanted to clasp my neck. I prayed in fear and took the particle of the Cross [a holy relic she possessed] in my hand. Then it remained with me, staying upright and big before me. It didn’t answer questions.” then it went out through the door, which it left open. 

June 19. I can recognize now that it is a man; he was only there for a short while. 

June 21. The horrible man more than an hour during the night, went back and forth continuously. He has disheveled black hair and horrific eyes. 

June 22. This man from one o’clock until past five with me, it was very bad. He repeatedly bowed over me and sat down at my bedside. I really wept for fear, then prayed the “hours” so that I didn’t need to see him. Then he went again back and forth and moaned horribly. Now it seems to me I must know him, however I cannot find out who it is. I have become very cowardly, for many times it is really a decision for me to go to my room in the evening. Yet ordinarily I am able to fall asleep very well. 

June 24. He came back, seized me at my shoulder. I said: “Now tell me what you want and then don’t come back.” 

No answer; he went again through the room a couple of times and then was gone. My rest however was completely destroyed. At six in the morning he came back. In daylight he even looks more horrific, makes a disgusting impression, belongs to the dirtiest category of ghosts who have already come. I said: “Don’t disturb me, I want to prepare myself for holy Communion!” Then he drew very near to me and lifted his hands imploringly. I was so sorry for him that I promised him a lot. Then I said: “Can’t you speak?” Whereupon he shook his head. “Do you have much to suffer?” Now he moaned terribly. I gave him much holy water” and then he was gone. 

June 27. He was there again, in the night. Seems to know me; I racked my brains as to who he might be. He is very unsympathetic.? 

June 29. He was again in the room when I went to bed. It could be the murdered shepherd Fritz. I asked him at once, but he didn’t react. I prayed with him, during which he fixed his eyes on me so angrily that I was really frightened. I asked him to go and then he went indeed. 

June 30. He came very briefly; his moaning waked me up. 

July 1. Again, I really believe it is shepherd Fritz. However his face is so black that I have difficulty recognizing him. But figure, nose, and eyes are wholly “he,” as I saw him so many times in life. 

July 2. He came back, didn’t look so terribly wild anymore and stayed not for a long time. I addressed him as “shepherd Fritz,” which he apparently found quite natural. 

July 3. He came very briefly. I asked: ”Are you the murdered shepherd Fritz?” Then he said distinctly: “Yes!” 

July 4. He came to me in the morning, looked sadly at me and went away soon, answered nothing, too. 

July 5. Now it struck me that everything about him is clearer. During prayer, he made the Sign of the Cross. 

July 6. I am very happy for he can speak now. I asked him: “Why do you always come to me?” He: “Because you have always prayed for me.” (That is right, for I had always been sorry for the poor fellow; he always looked so particular, even as a boy.) I: “Then what saved you?” He: “Insight and repentance.” I: “Weren’t you dead immediately?” He: “No.” I: “Will you be released soon?” He: “Not by far.” Then I gave him permission to continue coming to me, if it does him well. How remarkable it is, that someone who was so rude in life speaks like that when separated from his body. Now I am not frightened by him anymore, and would like to help him as best I can. How merciful is the good Lord! 

July 8. He came very briefly. 

July 9. He came at 6:00am and by doing so woke me up. Otherwise I had overslept. I: “Is it so important for you that I go to holy Mass?” He:”That way, you can help me a lot.” 

July 11. Only came very briefly. 

July 12. We prayed together,” then I: “Then what do you have to suffer?” He: “I am burning!” Then he came up to me and before I could defend myself, he pressed a finger on my hand. I was frightened so much and it hurt me so much, that I screamed. Now I have a red burn which I hope will heal soon. It is a very strange feeling, to have this visible mark from the other world.

July 24. Shepherd Fritz and the other one came two times in the night, all silent, but [the new one] not very pleasant. 

July 29. Nothing special to mention. Now these two are coming every night. The new one looks horrible, while shepherd Fritz becomes ever more bright!! 

August 10. Shepherd Fritz drew so near to me again, but looked very friendly. So I said to him, “Don’t you have to suffer so much anymore?” He: “No.” and I: “Can you pray for me yet?” He: “No.” and I: “Where are you then all the time?” He: “In the forlornness.” I: “Will you still come often to me?” He: “No.” and I: “Why not?” He: “I am not allowed to any more!” and I: “Have I been able to help you?” He: “Yes.” Then he was gone…. 

To close this remarkable account, Father Sebastian Wieser, Eugenie’s parish priest and confessor, comments: 

“The behavior of this apparition is like the echo of his earthly life. I have known shepherd Fritz well -he was like a “billygoat” in the parish. In him, the greatness of the mercy of God really manifests itself. Rarely did he come to church. He had an only son, who in school became well known for his meanness, falsehood, and deceptions and caused many troubles to his teachers and those in authority over him. When the boy had to be punished at school, the father pulled out all the stops of his indignation over the schoolmaster and priest. I prophesied at that time that someday the father himself would get a beating from this only son! 

When this son was seventeen years old and was big and quite strong, he beat his father to death at around midnight …. Nobody knew if Fritz was dead immediately or if he came to for a moment. The latter seems to have been the case. The murderer had knocked him down in the hay-barn and abandoned him to his fate. Only in the morning was the dead man discovered ….On the sixth of July he states that: “…insight and repentance” have saved him from damnation! On the twelfth day of July he says, “I am burning!” and presses a finger on the hand of the princess, which leaves a red burn which I have seen myself.” –Father Sebastian Wieser

Another modern account: St Gemma Galgani obtains the relief of a soul in Purgatory


The final account will go to Saint: St Gemma Galgani (1878-1903). It is taken from the excellent book “The Life of St Gemma Galgani” by Venerable Father Germanus Ruoppolo C.P.:

“Gemma knew by Divine inspiration that in the Convent of Passionist Nuns at Corneto [Italy] there was a Religious Sister very dear to God who was near death. She asked me about it, and on my answering that it was so, she at once began to implore of Jesus to make that particular Religious expiate all her faults on her deathbed, so that breathing her last she might enter Paradise at once. Her prayer, at least in part, was heard. The Sister suffered greatly and died in a few months. Gemma told those in her home of it in order that they might pray for the deceased, and she gave her name, Maria Teresa of the Infant Jesus, as she was not known in Lucca. After her death, this soul appeared to her full of sorrow, imploring her help as she was undergoing great torments in Purgatory for certain defects.

Nothing more was needed to set all the fibers of Gemma’s heart in motion. From that moment she gave herself no rest: she fervently offered prayers, tears and loving petitions to Our Lord.

“Jesus, save her,” she was overheard to exclaim. “Jesus, take Maria Teresa to Paradise without delay. She is a soul that is most dear to Thee. Let me suffer much for her; I want her to be in heaven.” 

And during this time Gemma writes the following in her Diary:

“It was around 9:30 and I was reading; all of a sudden I am shaken by a hand resting gently on my left shoulder. I turn in fright; I was afraid and tried to call out, but I was held back. I turned and saw a person dressed in white; I recognized it was a woman; I looked and her expression assured me I had nothing to fear: “Gemma,” she said after some moments, “do you know me?” I said no, because that was the truth; she responded: “I am Mother Maria Teresa of the Infant Jesus: I thank you so very much for the great concern you have shown me because soon I shall be able to attain my eternal happiness.”

All this happened while I was awake and fully aware of myself. Then she added: “Continue still, because I still have a few days of suffering.” And in so saying she caressed me and then went away. Her countenance, I must say, inspired much confidence in me. From that hour I redoubled my prayers for her soul, so that soon she should reach her objective; but my prayers are too weak; how I wish that for the souls in Purgatory my prayers should have the strength of the saints’.”

And the dear victim of expiation suffered without ceasing for sixteen days, at the end of which God was pleased to accept her sacrifice and to release that soul. This is how Gemma herself told me of it:

“Toward half-past one it seemed to me that the Blessed Mother herself came to tell me that the holy hour I was making was drawing to an end. Then almost immediately I thought I saw Sr. Maria Teresa coming toward me clad as a Passionist, accompanied by her Guardian Angel and by Jesus. Oh, how she was changed since the day I first saw her! Smiling, she drew close to me and said: “I am truly happy, and I go to enjoy my Jesus forever.” She thanked me again. Then she made sign of bidding me good-bye with her hand, several times, and with Jesus and her Guardian Angel she flew to Heaven. It was about half-past two o’clock in the morning.”


Source:mysticsofthechuch.com

The Polish Prince 

“Have pity on me, have pity on me, at least you my friends, because thehand of the Lord hath touched me. ” (Job 19:21).

A Polish prince who, for some political reason, had been exiled from his

native country bought a beautiful castle and property in France.
Unfortunately, he had lost the Faith of his childhood and was at the time

of our story engaged in writing a book against God and the existence of a

future life.
Strolling one evening in his garden, he came upon a poor woman weeping

bitterly. He questioned her as to the cause of her grief.
“Ah! Prince,” she replied, “I am the wife of Jean [John] Marie, your former

steward, who died two days ago. He was a good husband to me and a faithful

servant to Your Highness. His sickness was long and I spent all our savings

on the doctors, and now I have nothing left to get Masses said for his

soul.”
The Prince, touched by her grief, said a few kind words and, though

professing no longer to believe in a future life, gave her some gold coins

to have Masses said for her husband’s soul.
Some time after, it was again evening, and the Prince was in his study

working feverishly at his hook.
He heard a loud rap at the door and without looking up called out to the

visitor to come in. The door slowly opened and a man entered and stood

facing the Prince’s writing table.
On glancing up, what was not the Prince’s amazement to see Jean Marie, his

dead steward, looking at him with a sweet smile.
“Prince, ” he said, “I come to thank you for the Masses you enabled my wife

to have said for my soul. Thanks to the saving Blood of Christ, which was

offered for me, I am now going to Heaven, but God has allowed me to come

and thank you for your generous alms. ”
He then added impressively: “Prince, there is a God, a future life, a

Heaven and a Hell. ”
Having said these words he disappeared.
The Prince fell upon his knees and poured forth a fervent Credo ( I believe

in God.. “).