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.
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.
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