Now we come to mortal sins
Many Christians unfortunately commit mortal sins during their lives, but though they confess them they make no due satisfaction for them, as we have already said.
The Venerable Bede appears to be of the opinion that those who pass a great part of their lives in the commission of grave sins and confess them on their death bed [though thus avoiding Hell], may be detained in Purgatory until even the last day.
St Gertrude in her revelations states that those who have committed many grave sins and have not done due penance, may not share in the ordinary suffrages of the Church for a very considerable time!
All those sins, mortal and venial, are accumulating for the 20, 30, 40, 60 years of our lives. Each and every one has to be atoned for after death.
Is it then any wonder that souls have to remain so long in Purgatory?
[N.B.: As anyone who is familiar with the Bible and Holy Apostolic Teaching knows, they can’t pray themselves out of Purgatory.]
– 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