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Monthly Archives: January 2016

SHE REFUSED TO SACRIFICE TO FALSE GODS – ST MARTINA

Through her works and example, some unbelievers embraced the faith

Martina, a Roman girl of illustrious family, lost her parents at a very early age and generously distributed her huge fortune among the poor.

In the reign of Emperor Alexander, she was ordered to sacrifice to the false gods and vigorously denounced this loathsome crime.

Because of this, she was tortured in different ways and finally condemned to the beasts in the amphitheatre.

St Martina received divine help

After escaping from them unharmed through divine help, she was thrown on a burning pyre, and again sustained no injury. Some of her torturers, amazed with the fresh wonder of the miracle, embraced the faith of Christ and won the palm of martyrdom. God performed many miracles through Martina’s prayers, which intensely annoyed the judge, who was angered by the virgin’s constancy and ordered her to be beheaded.

This happened in the reign of Pope St Urban I. In the reign of Pope Urban VIII, Martina’s body and the bodies of the Martyrs Concordius, Epiphanius, and their companions were discovered in the old church in her honour near the Mamertine Prison. Later, the church was handsomely restored and her body was solemnly reinterred amid the rejoicing of the whole city.

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

 

 

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AND TO ALL CHRISTIAN NATIONS GRANT REPOSE (HYMN)

Be thou, the guardian of thy native land,

And to all Christian nations grant repose

From din of arms, and every hostile band –

From all our borders drive away our foes.

 

On thee our hopes are built, as on a tower;

Receive the homage we now humbly pay,

The vows which Rome accomplishes this hour,

With pious rites, and canticles’ sweet lay.

 

Keep far from us all dangerous delight,

O God, who comfortest thy Martyrs’ pain;

One God in Persons Three, bestow thy light

Wherewith thou makest strong thy Martyrs slain. Amen.

 
 

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LET US ARM OURSELVES, FROM EARLY MORNING, WITH THE SHIELD OF PRAYER

Finally, brethren, be strengthened in the Lord, and in the might of his power. Put on the armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the deceits of the devil. For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness. Therefore take unto you the armour of God (Ep6:10-13a)

See also:

“My Kingdom Is Not Of This World” – The Practice Of Daily Spiritual Combat For Christians Of Today 

Have you ever reflected on the following words of Scripture: Behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you like wheat?

The devil asks God’s permission to work to the detriment of souls, and God permits him… There is something terrible in this.

Now, do you know what happens? The devil remains the whole night seated beside your pillow, watching for your awakening like an impatient sower to cast seeds of wicked thoughts into our hearts.

Then he conceals himself in all creatures, and any of them can lead us to evil.

All worldly environment is like a plague-stricken city, in which every instant we run risk of contagion, if we proceed without caution.

What we see leads us to voluptuousness, or to jealousy, or to envy, or contempt of others… What we hear tempts us to vexation, to vanity, or to anger… What we feel tempts us to selfishness, to the desire of being esteemed, or to effeminacy; to idleness, or to revenge; or even to some sinful affection.

Prayer puts between us and mankind a pure and healthy atmosphere

Let us arm ourselves, from early morning, with the shield of prayer. God places it at our disposal – prayer, which puts between us and inanimate creatures something like a veil which has the power of rendering weaker the sensual rays which they pour forth around them, and transmitting to us only life-giving warmth.

Prayer, which puts between us and mankind that pure and healthy atmosphere that manifests to us their words and actions, with a heavenly sweetness like unto the perfume of a flower, and causes us to exclaim: It is good for us to be here!

Prayer, finally, which absorbs the wicked emanations of the heart, and dissipates them as the north wind does the noxious miasma, which springs up from the damp ground.

Are you at peace?

Are you at peace? asks a saint. If so, prayer will preserve you therein.

Are you tempted? Prayer will sustain you.

Have you fallen? Prayer will rise you up.

Have you lost courage? Prayer will restore you.

– From: Golden Grains, Eighth Edition, H.M. Gill and Son, Dublin, 1889

Jesus Christ’s Message Is Startling

“If The World Hates You, Know That It Has Hated Me Before You”

The Spiritual Benefits Of Fasting For Christians

 

 

 

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ABOUT ST THOMAS AQUINAS: “NO OTHER REWARD, LORD JESUS, BUT YOURSELF”

He became a religious against his mother’s wishes

Thomas Aquinas was born of a noble family and as a youth entered the Dominicans against the wishes of his mother and brothers. He was sent to Paris, but on the way abducted by his brothers to the castle of St John. There the pure young man drove away with a firebrand the woman whom his brothers had sent to seduce him.

His brothers abducted him and sent a woman to seduce him

At Paris he studied so deeply that when barely twenty-five, he publicly interpreted the philosophers and theologians with very great acclaim.

He always prayed before beginning to read or write

He always prayed before beginning to read or write, and once when he heard Christ crucified say, “Thomas, you have written well of me; what reward will you have?, he lovingly answered, “None other, Lord, than you yourself.”

Patron of all Catholic schools

He was well-read in every branch of learning. Urban IV summoned him to Rome and commanded him to compose the office for the feast of Corpus Christi, and Blessed Gregory X sent him to the Council of Lyons.

On the way Thomas fell sick at the monastery of Fossa Nuova, where he wrote a commentary on the Canticle of Canticles in spite of his sufferings. There he died at fifty on the Nones of March 1274. Leo XIII made him patron of all Catholic schools.

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

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“JESUS, YOU ARE MY FAMILY”: WHAT MY CRUCIFIX MEANS TO ME

We heard faintly from the lips of a dying religious a few stanzas which she murmured while her tearful eyes were fixed on the crucifix in her hand.

We give them, just as we found them in a book belonging to one of the pious sisters.

They were, without doubt, written for the cloister, but why not bring into families from time to time a little of the calm, peaceful, loving atmosphere of religious houses?

To My Crucifix

Come, let me hold thee to my heart, my hope divine/ Thou blessed sign of heavenly happiness/ Thou whom I hold in live ne’er to resign/ Since the vows I profess.

Yes, let me hold thee close; for art thou not my all?/ Art thou not my treasure till my last hour is near?/ Art thou not of the Spouse, whose image thou dost recall/ The tenderest souvenir?

On thee, on thee alone, my fervent hopes I base/ Than sceptres thou more precious dost appear/ And beyond the empire of the world I place/ My crucifix most dear.

For thou dost take the place of riches and of home/ All that I’ve left thou dost become for me/ My love, my only good, wherever I may roam/ My family ‘this thee.

Beyond the nails and tears naught wish I to possess/ What are the world’s most dazzling favours worth?/ One sigh breathed at thy feet for me doth more express/ than loud songs of mirth.

Thou ne’er wilt leave me when the last hour’s at hand/ My dying glance thy holy face will seek/ For the mute prayer thou sure wilt understand/ I am too weak to speak.

When this poor frame lies motionless and cold/ My rigid fingers still will clasp my all/ When friends have left, thou still thy watch wilt hold/ Beneath my funeral pall.

Ah! yes, come to my heart, thou holy, wondrous sign!/ Speak of my God, whose love is ever high/ May I love Him, and follow, suffer, ne’er repine/ To my last earthly sigh.

– From: Golden Grains, Eighth Edition, H.M. Gill and Son, Dublin, 1889

 

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READ ME OR RUE IT

Help, help, they suffer so much!

I. We can never understand too clearly that every alms, small or great, which we give to the poor we give to God.

He accepts it and rewards it as given to Himself. Therefore all we do for the Holy Souls God accepts as done to Himself. It is as if we relieved or released Him from Purgatory.

What a thought! How He will repay us!

II. As there is no hunger, no thirst, no poverty, no need, no pain, no suffering compared in the Church with what the Souls in Purgatory endure there is no alms more deserving, none more pleasing to God, none more meritorious for us than the alms, the prayers, the Masses we give to the Holy Souls.

III. It is very possible that some of our own nearest and dearest ones are still suffering the excruciating pains of Purgatory and calling us piteously for help and relief.

Is it not dreadful that we are so hardened as not to think more about them, that we are so cruel as to deliberately forget them!

For the dear Christ’s sake let us do all, but all, we can for them.

Approval of His Eminence the Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon

We approve and recommend with all our heart the beautiful little book “Read Me or Rue It” by E.R.M. Although small it is destined to do great good among Catholics, many of whom are incredibly ignorant of the great doctrine of Purgatory. As a consequence they do little or nothing to avoid it themselves and little to help the poor souls who are suffering there so intensely, waiting for the Masses and prayers which should be offered for them. It is our earnest desire that every Catholic should read this little book and spread it about as widely as possible. 4/6/1936 (signed by His Eminence the Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon)

“READ ME OR RUE IT”

Foreword

This title is somewhat startling, yet, dear Reader, if you peruse the little book you will see for yourself how well deserved it is.

The book tells us how to save ourselves and how to save others from untold suffering.

Some books are good and may be read with great profit. Others are better and should be read without fail.

There are, however, books of such sterling worth by reason of the counsels they suggest, the conviction they carry with them, the urge to action they give us that it would be sheer folly not to read them.

“Read Me or Rue It” belongs to this class.

It is for your best interest, dear friend, to read it and re-read it, to ponder well and deeply on its contents. You will never regret it, rather great and poignant will be your regret if you fail to study its few but pregnant pages.

 

Index

[The little book can be read by navigating via the “next chapter” link at the bottom of each chapter to “turn the page”. Please click here to begin reading Chapter I. In addition, you can find the chapters listed below as arranged in the booklet]

I. “Have Pity On Me, At Least You, My Friends!”

II. Purgatory: The Soul Craves With All Intensity For God

III. Deliberately Not To Think Of Purgatory Is Asking For A Long Purgatory

IV. Case Studies: The Atheist Author-To-Be

V. “I Neglected To Offer Suffrages For The Souls In Purgatory”

VI. How Long Do Souls Remain In Purgatory?

VII. …Until We Shall Have Paid The Last Farthing

VIII. Worldly Attachment: “Many Around Us Live In Hunger And Misery While We Spent Lavishly And Needlessly On Ourselves”

IX. Who Can Have More Claim On Us?

X. Why Pray For The Souls In Purgatory?

XI. The Holy Souls Will Repay Us A Thousand Times Over

XII. How We Can Help The Holy Souls In Purgatory

XIII. What The Holy Souls Do For Those Who Help Them

XIV. Further Examples Of The Most Amazing Help Afforded By The Holy Souls

XV. The Holy Souls Are Second To None In Generosity

 

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THE HOLY SOULS ARE SECOND TO NONE IN GENEROSITY

Previous chapter

The more we give, the more we get

A business man in Boston joined the Association of the Holy Souls and gave a large sum of money annually that prayers and Masses might be said for them.

The Director of the Association was surprised at the gentleman’s generosity for he knew that he was not a rich man. He asked kindly one day if the alms he so generously gave was his own offering, or donations gathered from others.

“What I offer, dear Father,” he said “is my own offering. Be not alarmed. I am not a very rich man and you may think that I give more than I am able to do. It is not so, for far from losing by my charity the Holy Souls see to it that I gain considerably more than I give. They are second to none in generosity.”

 

The Printer of Cologne

The celebrated printer of Cologne, William Freyssen, gives us the following account of how his wife and child were restored to health by the Holy Souls.

William Freyssen got the order to print a little work on Purgatory. Correcting the proofs his attention was caught by the facts narrated in the book. He learned for the first time what wonders the Holy Souls can work for their friends.

Just at that time his son fell grievously ill and soon the case became desperate. Remembering what he had read about the power of the Holy Souls, Freyssen at once promised to spread, at his own expense, a hundred copies of the book which his firm was printing. To make the promise more solemn he went to the Church and there made his vow. At once a sense of peace and confidence filled his soul.

On his return home, the boy, who had been unable to swallow a drop of water, asked for food. Next day he was out of danger and soon completely cured.

He was completely cured

At once Freyssen ordered the books on Purgatory to be distributed, feeling sure that it was the best way to obtain help for the suffering souls, by interesting a hundred people in them. No one who knows what they suffer can refuse to pray for them.

A new sorrow

Time passed, and a new sorrow fell to the share of the printer. This time his dear wife was stricken down and, despite every care, grew daily worse. She lost the use of her mind and was almost completely paralysed, so that the doctor gave up all hope.

The husband, bethinking him, of what the Holy Souls had done for his boy, again ran to the Church and promised to distribute 200 of the books on Purgatory, begging in exchange the urgent succour of the Holy Souls.

A complete recovery

Wonderful to relate, the mental aberration ceased, his wife’s mind became normal, she recovered the use of her limbs, and of her tongue. In a short time she was perfectly restored to health.

The Cure of Cancer

D. Joana de Menezes thus tells of her cure.

She was suffering severely from a cancerous growth in the leg and was plunged into grief.

Remembering what she had heard of the power of the Souls in Purgatory she resolved to place her confidence in them and had nine Masses offered for them. She promised, moreover, to publish her cure if it were granted.

Gradually the swelling went down and the tumour and cancer disappeared.

An escape from Brigands

Father Louis Mamaci, zealous Missionary, had great devotion to the Souls in Purgatory. He found himself obliged to set out on a dangerous journey but confidently asked the Holy Souls to protect him in the dangers that he was likely to meet with. His road lay through a vast desert which he knew to be infested by brigands.

Whilst plodding along, saying the Rosary for the Holy Souls…

Whilst plodding along, saying the Rosary for the Holy Souls, what was not his surprise, on looking round, to find himself surrounded as by a bodyguard of blessed spirits. Soon he discovered the reason. He had fallen into an ambuscade of brigands but the Holy Souls at once surrounded him and drove off the miscreants who sought his life. The Holy Souls did not abandon him until he was well out of danger.

A return to life

The Prior of Cirfontaines gives us his story.

A young man of my parish fell dangerously ill with a typhoid fever. His parents were overcome with grief and asked me to recommend him to the prayers of the members of the Association of the Holy Souls.

It was Saturday. The boy was at death’s door. The doctors had recourse to every remedy. All in vain. They were in despair.

I was the only one who had hope

I was the only one who had hope. I knew the power of the Holy Souls, for I had already seen what they could do.

On Sunday I begged the Associates of the Holy Souls to pray fervently for our sick friend.

On Monday the danger passed. The boy was cured.

 

Read and Wake Up

In my long life, writes a priest, I have noticed with amazement how few Catholics give generously to the poor and needy, notwithstanding what Our Blessed Lord commands them to do.

I have also remarked that some Catholics are, indeed, very generous and good. Some care for the poor, others look after the sick. Lepers, consumptives, cancer patients, the mentally deficient, all have their friends. Some prefer to help the young, the hearts of others go out to the old. All the various classes of the poor and needy find champions though, generous as they should be.

The strangest thing of all

The strangest thing of all is that I have never met one man or woman who has dedicated himself entirely, wholeheartedly to the greatest of all charities, to the greatest of all the needy – viz the Holy Souls of Purgatory.

There may be a few who do so but in my long and very varied experience I never met any.

Alas! the words of this good priest are only too true.

We appeal to those who have not as yet dedicated themselves to any particular form of charity to dedicate all their energies to the Holy Souls. Let them do what they can personally and also induce others to help.

The best way is to spread about hundreds of copies of this little book [or print off the text and spread the word] and so make hundreds of friends for the Holy Souls. Who can read it and refuse to help them?

 

– From: Read Me or Rue It , by E.D.M., approved of His Eminence the Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon 4/6/1936, printed by Kerryman, Co Kerry, Ireland

 

 

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FURTHER EXAMPLES OF THE MOST AMAZING HELP AFFORDED BY THE HOLY SOULS

Previous chapter

How a poor boy became a Bishop, a Cardinal, and a Saint

Peter Damian lost both Father and Mother shortly after his birth. One of his brothers adopted him but treated him with unnatural harshness, forcing him to work hard and giving him poor food and scanty clothing.

One day Peter found a silver piece which represented to him a small fortune. A friend told him that he could conscientiously use it for himself as the owner could not be found.

The only difficulty Peter had was to choose what it was he most needed, for he was in sore need of many things.

While turning the matter over in his young mind it struck him that he could do a still better thing, viz, have a Mass said for the Holy Souls in Purgatory, especially for the souls of his dear parents. At the cost of a great sacrifice he put his thought into effect and had the Mass offered.

The Holy Souls repaid his sacrifice most generously. From that day forward a complete change became noticeable in his fortunes.

His eldest brother called at the house where he lived and, horrified at the brutal hardships the little fellow was subjected to, arranged that he be handed over to his own care. He clad him and fed him as his own child, educated and cared for him most affectionately. Blessing followed blessing. Peter’s wonderful talents became known and he was called to the priesthood, sometime after he was raised to the episcopacy and finally created Cardinal. Miracles attested his great sanctity so that after death he was canonised and made Doctor of the Church.

These wonderful graces came to him after that one Mass said for the Holy Souls.

An adventure in the Appenines

A group of priests were called to Rome to treat a grave business matter. They were bearers of important documents and a large sum of money was entrusted to them for the Holy Father. Aware that the Appenines, over which they had to pass, were infested by daring bandits, they chose a trusty driver. There was no tunnel through the mountains nor train in those days.

They placed themselves under the protection of the Holy Souls and decided to say profundis De profundis every hour for them.

When right in the heart of the mountains, the driver gave the alarm and, at the same time, lashed the horses into a furious gallop. Looking around, the priests saw fierce bandits at each side of the road with fixed rifles ready to fire. They were amazed that no shot rang out. They were completely at the mercy of the bandits.

After an hour’s headlong flight the driver stopped and, looking at the Priests, said: “I cannot understand how we escaped. These desperadoes never spare anyone.”

The Fathers were convinced that they owed their safety to the Holy Souls, a fact that was afterwards confirmed beyond doubt.

When their business was concluded in Rome, one of their number was detained in the Eternal City, where he was appointed chaplain to a Prison. Not long after, one of the fiercest brigands in Italy was captured, condemned to death for a long series of murders and awaited execution in the prison. Anxious to gain his confidence, the Chaplain told him of several adventures he himself had had and, finally, of his recent escape in the Appenines.

The criminal manifested the greatest interest in the story. When it was ended, he exclaimed: “I was the leader of that band. We thought that you had money and we determined to rob and murder you. An invisible force prevented each and all of us from firing, as we assuredly would have done had we been able.”

The chaplain then told him of how they had placed themselves under the protection of the Holy Souls and that they ascribed their deliverance to their protection.

The bandit found no difficulty in believing it. In fact, it made his conversion more easy. He died full of repentance.

How Pius IX cured a bad memory

The venerable Pontiff Pius IX appointed a holy and prudent religious Bishop of a diocese. The priest, alarmed at the responsibility put on him, begged earnestly to be excused.

His protests were in vain. The Holy Father knew his merits.

Overcome with apprehension the humble religious solicited an audience with the Pope, who received him most graciously. Once more he pleaded earnestly to be excused, but the Pope was immovable.

As a last recourse, Padre Tomaso told the Holy Father that he had a very bad memory which would naturally prove to be a grave impediment to the high office put on him.

Pius IX answered with a smile: “Your diocese is very small in comparison with the Universal Church, which I carry on my shoulders. Your cares will be very light in comparison with mine.

I, too, suffered from a grave defect of my memory but I promised to say a fervent prayer daily for the Holy Souls, who, in return, have obtained for me an excellent memory. Do you likewise, dear Father, and you will have cause to rejoice.”

– From: Read Me or Rue It, by E.D.M., approved of His Eminence the Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon 4/6/1936, printed by Kerryman, Co Kerry, Ireland

Next chapter

 

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WHAT THE HOLY SOULS DO FOR THOSE WHO HELP THEM

Previous chapter

St Alphonsus Liguori says that though the Holy Souls cannot merit for themselves they can obtain for us great graces. They are not, formally speaking, intercessors as the Saints but, through the sweet Providence of God, they can obtain for us as astounding favours and deliver us from evils, sickness and dangers of every kind.

It is beyond all doubt, as we have already said, that they repay us a thousand times for anything we do for them.

The following facts, a few hundreds which we might quote, are sufficient to show what powerful and generous friends the Holy Souls are.

How a Girl found her Mother

A poor servant girl in France once heard a sermon on the Holy Souls which made an indelible impression on her mind. She was deeply moved by the thought of the intense and unceasing sufferings the souls endure and horrified to see how cruelly they are neglected and forgotten by their friends on Earth.

Among other things the preacher stressed was that many souls who are in reality near to their release – one Mass might suffice to set them free – are oftentimes long detained, it may be for years, just because the last needful suffrage has been withheld, or forgotten, or neglected!

With her simple faith Jeanne Mari resolved, that, cost what it may cost, she would have a Mass said to them, every month, especially for the soul nearest to Heaven. She earned little and it was sometimes difficult to keep her promise, but she never failed.

One one occasion she went to Paris with her mistress and there fell I’ll so that she was obliged to go to Hospital. Unfortunately the illness proved to be a long one and her mistress had to return home, hoping that her maid would soon rejoin her. When at last the poor servant was able to leave the Hospital all she had left of her scanty earnings was one franc!

What was she to do? Where to turn? Suddenly the thought flashed across her mind that she had not had her usual monthly Mass offered for the Holy Souls. But she had only one franc! That was little enough to buy her food. Yet her confidence that the Holy Souls would not fail her triumphed. She made her way into a Church and asked a priest, just about to say Mass, if he would offer it for the Holy Souls. He consented to do so, never dreaming that the modest alms offered was the only money the poor girl possessed.

At the conclusion of the Holy Sacrifice our heroine left the Church. A wave of sadness clouded her face, she felt utterly bewildered.

A young gentleman, touched by her evident distress, asked her if she was in trouble and if he could help her. She told her story briefly and ended by saying how much she desired work.

Somehow she felt consoled at the kind way in which the young man listened to what she said and fully recovered her confidence.

“I am delighted beyond measure,” he said “to help you. I know a lady who is even now looking for a servant. Come with me”, and so saying he led her to a house not far distant and bade her ring the bell, assuring her that she would find work.

In answer to her ring the lady of the house herself opened the door and inquired what she required. “Madam,” she said “I have been told that you are looking for a servant. I have no work and should be glad to get the place.”

The lady was amazed and replied: “Who could have told you that I need a servant? It was only a few minutes ago that I had to dismiss my maid, and that at a moment’s notice. You did not meet her?”

“No, Madam, the person that informed me that you required a servant was a young gentleman.”

“Impossible,” exclaimed the lady “no young man, in fact no one at all, could have known that I needed a servant.”

“But, Madam,” the girl answered excitedly “that is the young man who told me”, pointing to a picture on the wall.

” Why, child, that is my only son who has been dead for more than a year.”

“Dead or not,” asserted the girl with deep conviction in her voice “it was he who told me to come to you and he even led me to the door. See the scar over his eye, I would know him anywhere.”

Then followed the full story of how she had had Mass offered with her last franc for the Holy Souls, especially for the one nearest to Heaven.

Convinced at last of the truth of what Jeanne Marie told her, the lady received her with open arms. “Come,” she said “but not as my servant but as my dear daughter. You have sent my darling boy to Heaven. I have no doubt that it was he who brought you to me.”

– From: Read Me or Rue It, by E.D.M., approved of His Eminence the Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon 4/6/1936, printed by Kerryman, Co Kerry, Ireland

Next chapter

 

 

 

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HOW WE CAN HELP THE HOLY SOULS IN PURGATORY

Previous chapter

I. The first means is by joining the Association of the Souls in Purgatory. The conditions are easy:

a) Say a prayer every day for the Holy Souls.

b) Offer all the good works, prayers, sufferings and indulgences, of one day in each week, preferably Sunday, for them. There is no necessity to do anything new or extraordinary but just offer what one is accustomed to do on that day.

c) Give an alms every year for the Association:

d) Get as many people as possible to join the Association.

Those who wish to join and have not the Association in their parishes can send their names, address and annual alms to the Association in Travessa do Corpo Santo, 32, Lisbon, Portugal.

This Association is approved by the Cardinal Archbishop of Lisbon. [These details are given as printed in the booklet “Read Me or Rue It”, reference below.]

II. A second means of helping the Holy Souls is by having Masses offered for them. This is certainly the most efficacious way of relieving them.

III. Those who cannot get many Masses offered, owing to want of means, ought to assist at  as many Masses as possible for this intention.

A young man, who was earning a very modest salary, told the writer: “My wife died a few years ago. I got 10 Masses said for her. I could not possible do more but heard 1000 for her dear soul.”

IV. The recital of the Rosary with its innumerable indulgences, the Way of the Cross, which is also richly indulgenced, are excellent means of helping the Holy Souls.

Blessed John of Massias, as we saw, released from Purgatory more than a million souls, chiefly by reciting the Rosary and offering its innumerable indulgences for them.

V. Another easy and efficacious way is by the constant repetition of short indulgenced prayers. Many people have the custom to say 500, or 1000 times each day the ejaculation “Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place my trust in thee” or the one word “Jesus”. These are most consoling devotions and bring oceans of graces to those who practise them and give immense relief to the Holy Souls.

Those who say the ejaculation 1000 times a day gain many partial Indulgences! What a multitude of souls they can thus relieve! What will not be at the end of a month, a year, 50 years? And if they do not say the ejaculations what an immense number of graces and favours they shall have lost. It is quite possible and even easy to say these ejaculations 1000 times a day. But if one does not say them 1000 times let him say them 500 or 200 times.

VI. Still another powerful prayer is: Eternal Father, I offer you the most Precious Blood of Jesus with all the Masses being said this day all over the world for the Souls in Purgatory.

Our Lord showed St Gertrude  a vast number of souls leaving Purgatory and going to Heaven as a result of this prayer which the Saint was accustomed to say frequently during the day.

VII. The Heroic Act consists in offering to God in favour of the Souls in Purgatory all the works of satisfaction we practise during life and all the suffrages that will be offered for us after death. If God rewards so abundantly the most trifling alms given to a poor man in His name what an immense reward will He not give to those who offer all their works of satisfaction in life and death for the Souls He loves so dearly.

This Act does not prevent priests from offering Mass for the intentions they wish, or lay-people from praying for any persons or other intentions they desire. We counsel every one to make this act.

Alms help the Holy Souls

St Martin gave half his cloak to a poor beggar to find out afterwards that it was to Christ he had given it. Our Lord appeared to him and thanked him.

Blessed Jordan of the Dominican Order could never refuse an alms when it was asked in the name of God. One day he had forgotten his purse. A poor man implored an alms for the love of God. Rather than refuse him, Jordan, who was then a student, gave him a most precious girdle which he prized dearly. Shortly after he entered a church and found his girdle encircling the waist of Christ Crucified. He too, had given his alms to Christ. We all give our alms to Christ.

Resolution

a) Let us give all the alms we can afford;

b) Let us have said all the Masses in our power;

c) Let us hear as many more as it is possible;

d) Let us offer all our pains and sufferings for the relief of the Holy Souls.

We shall thus deliver countless Souls from Purgatory, who will repay us ten thousand times over.

– From: Read Me or Rue It, by E.D.M., approved of His Eminence the Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon 4/6/1936, printed by Kerryman, Co Kerry, Ireland

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