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ARCHANGEL MICHAEL, CONSOLER OF THE POOR SOULS

In her beautiful prayers in the Mass for the Dead, the Church with maternal solicitude places the souls of her departed children in the hands of St Michael, that he may lead them into the kingdom of everlasting light. If St Michael is so solicitous for the welfare of souls during their lifetime on earth and at the hour of death, we may be certain that he will also befriend them during their stay in Purgatory and will hasten to bring them consolation.

St Michael helps the Holy Souls in Purgatory

A Cistercian monk appeared to a priest friend soon after his death and told him he would be delivered from Purgatory if during Holy Mass the priest would recommend his soul to St Michael. The priest complied with this desire, and he, together with others who were present, had the consolation of seeing the soul of his friend taken to Heaven by the Archangel.

It is related that a certain priest, one day while offering the Holy Sacrifice for the dead, recommended some souls in a particular manner when pronouncing the words: “May the Prince of Angels, St Michael, lead them into the glory of Heaven.” At the same time he saw the glorious Archangel descend from Heaven into Purgatory to deliver those souls and to conduct them into Paradise.

St Michael conducted the Holy Souls into Paradise

“The prince of the heavenly militia,” says St Anselm, “is all-powerful in Purgatory, and he can assist the Poor Souls whom the justice and sanctity of the Almighty retain in this place of punishment.” “It is incontestably recognised since the foundation of Christianity,” declares St Robert Bellarmine, “that the souls of the Faithful Departed are delivered from Purgatory  through the intercession of St Michael the Archangel.” Let us add to these authorities the words of St Alphonsus Liguori: “St Michael has received the care of consoling and helping the souls in Purgatory.”

– From: ‘Neath St Michael’s Shield, Fifth Edition, 1962

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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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HOW LONG DO SOULS REMAIN IN PURGATORY?

Previous chapter

The length of time souls are detained in Purgatory depends on:

  1. the number of their attachments to temporal things/their faults
  2. on the malice and deliberation with which these have been committed;
  3. on the penance done, or not done, the satisfaction made, or not made, for sins during life;
  4. Much, too, depends on the suffrages offered for them after death.

What can be safely said is that the time souls spend in Purgatory, as a rule, is very much longer than people commonly imagine.

We will quote a few of the many instances in the lives and revelations of the Saints.

St Louis’ father

St Louis Bertrant’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 rigours 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

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

Other pious people

It was related to a holy nun in Famphluna, who succeeded in releasing many Carmelite nuns from Purgatory that most of these had spent there terms from thirty to sixty years!

Carmelite nuns in Purgatory for forty, fifty and sixty years! What will it be for those living midst the temptations of the World and with all their hundreds of weaknesses?

St Vincent Ferrer, after the death of his sister, prayed with incredible fervour 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 indeterminable time in Purgatory.

Necessary and prudent

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 been approved by the Church were it not necessary and prudent.

The time varies

We do not mean to imply that all souls are detained equally long periods in the expiatory fires. Many have committed lesser faults and have done more penance. Therefore their punishment will be much less severe.

Still the instances we have quoted are very much to the point, for if these souls who enjoyed the intimacy, who saw the example and shared in the intercession of great Saints during their lives and who, after death, were aided by their most efficacious suffrages, yet were detained for such a length of time in Purgatory what may not happen to us who enjoy none of these wonderful privileges?

Next chapter

– 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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“I NEGLECTED TO OFFER SUFFRAGES FOR THE SOULS IN PURGATORY”

Previous chapter

St Antonius and his friend

Here is a narrative of a different kind but not less instructive.

St Antonius, the illustrious Archbishop of Florence, relates that a pious gentleman and a great friend of the Dominican Convent in which the Saint resided, died. Many Masses and suffrages were offered for his soul.

The soul of the gentleman appeared to him

The Saint was very much afflicted when, after a lapse of a very 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 judgement, has applied those 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.”

God is just

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

Remember you who read these lines, that the terrible fate of this pious gentleman will be the fate of all those who neglect to pray for and refuse to help the holy souls.

– 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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HOW CAN HOLY SOULS BOXES HELP THE DECEASED, SINCE THE LATTER DON’T NEED TO EAT OR PAY BILLS ANY MORE?

“QUESTION: At the back of the Church is a box for the Holy Souls. How can our offerings help people who are no longer alive?

ANSWER: Offerings put in the Holy Souls box are given as stipends to priests to offer Masses for the Holy Souls. [Bricklayers, teachers, labourers etc. can’t give all their time entirely “for free” either, even if they wanted to, since, after all, they need to eat.] Our Lord is the One who chiefly offers the Mass, and its fruits are infinite, but the Church is also actively involved in the offering, and our capacity to receive the fruits of the Mass is limited.

Hence from earliest times, Christians have offered Mass frequently for their loved ones who have died, especially on the occasion of their anniversary, to pray for them, to ask forgiveness for their sins, and to offer satisfaction for them. Every Mass is offered for all the living and the dead, as all the Eucharistic Prayers make plain.

However, those who participate in the Mass make their own prayers of offering for particular intentions. The priest may do so as well, applying the fruits of his own offering of the Mass, either at his own choice, or at the request of others. The stipend was originally the means of his upkeep so that he didn’t have to take another job but could devote himself exclusively to the priestly ministry (rather like the portion of the sacrifice given to the Levite in the Old Testament). Nowadays it forms only a part, though sometimes a significant one, of the priest’s income. Holy Souls offerings are often sent from parishes to priests elsewhere who are struggling financially.

The Masses offered for the Holy Souls in general are an act of charity whereby we help those who are forgotten and have nobody to pray for them, and those many in our time who are remembered but for whom nobody actually prays, because many people do not believe in purgatory. Incidentally, they are also a way for people to contribute to the upkeep of their pastors, a duty which the Church reminds us of in her precepts. In these different ways, the Holy Souls box is a small practical way of expression of our communion with one another in Christ.”
– This article by Fr Tim Finigan is part of the feature “Catholic Dilemmas”; it was published in “The Catholic Herald” issue November 8 2013. (Text in brackets [] added afterwards.) For subscriptions please visit http://www.catholicherald.co.uk (external link).

 
 

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LET US HELP THE HOLY SOULS IN PURGATORY (IT IS THE GREATEST CHARITY WE CAN PERFORM ON EARTH)

A SHORT NOTE FOR THE BENEFIT OF OUR SEPARATED BRETHREN:

Some terms are not used in the Bible; rather, those tenets of faith are described in the Scriptures without using the relevant term, such as “Holy Trinity” or “Purgatory”, the latter referring to the “fire that cleanses some souls so they can enter heaven”. These souls are saved, they will enter heaven eventually; Purgatory is not a place as such, it is a s t a t e of the soul. Holy Scripture teaches that God will render to every man according to his works; that nothing defiled shall enter heaven; and that some will be saved, ‘as one who has gone through fire’ (Mt 16:27; Apoc 21:27; 1 Co 3:15).

“THE GREAT IMPORTANCE OF DEVOTION TO THE HOLY SOULS

Devotion to the Holy Souls is so pleasing to God and so beneficial to our own souls. The least pain of Purgatory is far worse than the greatest suffering we can imagine upon this earth. This is why a moment in Purgatory can even seem to be hundreds of years. The Holy Souls cannot help themselves nor alleviate their sorrows in the slightest way. However great their sufferings may be, they can no longer merit, nor can they obtain new graces.

At death the time of working and meriting has ended once and for all and the soul remains in that state in which it has departed from this life. The punishments of Purgatory have one purpose alone and that is to satisfy God’s justice and to cleanse the souls from all stain of sin. Let us listen to the pleadings of our suffering brothers and sisters (who could also be our friends and relatives) and let us help them by all the means in our power.

If we fail in this, our hard-heartedness will most certainly be displeasing to Our Lord, for those who have no mercy on the suffering souls in Purgatory will also be wanting in mercy when they in their turn perhaps have to spend time in the purifying flames of Purgatory. ‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.’

THE LONGING OF THE HOLY SOULS TO BE WITH GOD

The Holy Souls long to be with God and to enjoy the Beatific Vision. Their sufferings are indescribable in human terms, but what causes their greatest agony is the absence of God, Who is now the sole object of their desires.

On earth we cannot really understand Who God is, but the Holy Souls begin to know Him, His goodness, His mercy and His love. After this clearer view and their thirst for union, they yearn for God unceasingly. Whilst on earth so many people do not realise that this life is just a journey and do not even give God or eternity a thought, but if once opened to the Beatific Vision, even for a brief moment, the eyes of the soul can never again close without inexpressable pain. To shut out that most beautiful sight is agony.

IT IS VERY PROFITABLE TO HAVE DEVOTION TO THE HOLY SOULS

God often grants more graces through their intercession than through the prayers of the Saints. St Catherine of Bologna, whenever she wished to obtain any grace, had recourse to the Souls in Purgatory and her prayers were immediately heard. She even declared that by asking the intercession of these souls, she obtained many favours which she had not obtained through the intercession of the Saints.

Then if we want to be even more certain of obtaining what we request, we should pray for and at the same time ask the intercession of the Holy Souls who have loved Our Lady the most whilst upon earth. These are the ones She most wishes to release and we will surely see that our prayer is heard.

GOD WANTS US TO HELP THE HOLY SOULS

God is so pleased with those who help the Holy Souls, because He longs for them to be with Him for all eternity. By helping to deliver a soul from Purgatory, we give God as much pleasure as if we had released He Himself from a dark prison. Did He not say: ‘Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these My least brethren, you did it to Me.’

WE SHOULD STILL PRAY FOR THEM EVEN MANY YEARS AFTER THEIR DEATH

What suffering for the Holy Souls to see that they have been forgotten by those whom they loved during life and for whom, perhaps, they made sacrifices. We think far too little about our deceased friends and their memory often perishes soon after their death. But we should remember, and this has been confirmed by St Pio of Pietrelcina, that since with God there is an eternal present, the prayers we say for them now (even many years after their death) will have been taken into account by God at the moment of their death. That is why we should never cease in our prayers for them.

CHARITY COVERS OVER A MULTITUDE OF SINS

Those who help the poor souls in any way, perform not one, but all of the seven works of mercy at the same time, in a more perfect manner and deserving greater reward than if these acts of charity had been performed for a soul living on earth. In showing mercy to the holy souls, we have the great hope that God will also be merciful to us in our hour of need.

THE GRATITUDE OF THE HOLY SOULS

The Holy Souls, in their turn, will not be ungrateful to their benefactors who will most assuredly be remembered in their own prayers to God. It is their Guardian Angel who will make known to them how we have assisted them and will urge them to show their gratitude by praying for us. God so wants to relieve the Holy Souls of their sufferings and is pleased to answer the prayers which they offer for their benefactors.

THE SABBATINE PRIVILEGE

This is the early liberation from Purgatory on the first Saturday after death, through Our Lady’s intercession, for those who wear Her Brown Scapular, faithfully fulfilling the requisite obligations.

IS IT POSSIBLE TO AVOID PURGATORY?

God grants all souls all the graces and lights necessary so that they may go straight to Heaven. Those who abandon themselves completely into His hands and strive to do His holy Will in all things, will, at the end of their earthly lives, close their eyes upon the sun so as to open them to the true Light.

WAYS IN WHICH WE CAN ASSIST THE HOLY SOULS IN PURGATORY

God Himself has placed in our hands the keys of Purgatory so that we may help to alleviate their pains and hasten their arrival in Paradise, where they will love and praise God for all eternity. What a consoling thought it is that we are able to help, even after their death, those whom we have loved in this life, thus proving our sincere love and gratitude to them. There are many ways in which we can assist them.

THE HOLY SACRIFICE OF THE MASS

There is nothing more efficacious in satisfying the justice of God and in obtaining the remission of the temporal punishments due to sin as the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, during which Jesus Christ renews the Sacrifice He once offered on Calvary. St Cyril said: ‘This Sacrifice affords them extraordinary relief.’

HOLY COMMUNION

Another way in which we can help the Holy Souls very much is by fervently offering up our Holy Communion for them. In doing this we offer to the Heavenly Father all the merits of Christ’s Passion and Death in satisfaction for the temporal punishment still due to them.

INDULGENCES

The Council of Trent confirmed that the use of Indulgences are of great benefit to the Christian people. We can obtain both plenary and partial indulgences for the Holy Souls in many ways. Let us ask Our Blessed Lady to help us to obtain as many as we possibly can for our brothers and sisters suffering in the fires of Purgatory.

PRAYERS

Our prayers for the Holy Souls are very efficacious because they proceed from our true disinterested charity and because we are asking not for temporal but for spiritual favours. After the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the prayers which help them the most are the Holy Rosary and the Way of the Cross.

OFFERING UP SACRIFICES FOR THEIR RELIEF

Let us offer many little sacrifices for the Holy Souls during the day. These should be as hidden as possible and offered to God with love. One example is that we could abstain from eating or drinking something which we like. In addition to exterior mortifications we can also offer for the Holy Souls the interior mortifications of the overcoming of our sinful inclinations and subduing our evil passions. Let us also cheerfully embrace all the crosses which God sends to us each day and offer these in satisfaction for the Souls in Purgatory.

ALMSGIVING

We are able to assist the Holy Souls in Purgatory by almsgiving, which can be compared to a shower of rain falling into Purgatory and mitigating its devouring flames or even extinguishing them altogether.

(This leaflet is dedicated to St Michael the Archangel. He is the one who leads souls to Purgatory and then on to their eternal home after their purification. Everyone should honour him in a special way and the best way of doing this is by spreading devotion to the Holy Souls in Purgatory.)”
– This is the content of a leaflet by the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate, House of Contemplation, Blessed Virgin of Mt Carmel, Lanherne, St Mawgan, Newquay, Cornwall TR8 4ER

 
 

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“SO GRATEFUL NOT TO BE IN HELL” – A FIRST HAND ACCOUNT OF SOME SOULS IN PURGATORY

“SO GRATEFUL NOT TO BE IN HELL” – A FIRST HAND ACCOUNT OF SOME SOULS IN PURGATORY
[Holy Scripture declares that God will render to every man according to his works; that nothing defiled shall enter heaven; and that some will be saved, ‘as one who has gone through fire’ (Mt 16:27; Apoc 21:27; 1 Co 3:15).]

THE UTTER IMPORTANCE OF MASSES AND PRIVATE PRAYER AND SACRIFICE FOR THE POOR SOULS IN PURGATORY

A FERVENT DESIRE TO HELP THE POOR SOULS

Maria Simma was born the second of eight children on 2nd February 1915 in Vorarlberg in the countryside of Austria. Because the family was poor, the children had to go out to work with other people from an early age in order to contribute to the family income. Being a very pious child, Maria yearned to become a nun. Due to her frail health, however, she was rejected by three convents.

Instead, she then took charge of her father’s household. Upon his death, she remained living in her father’s house on her own. In addition to domestic tasks she grew fruit and vegetables on the plot but the income was scarcely enough to make ends meet. During the period of National Socialism she taught children R.E. for several years.

Her spiritual life was characterised by a child-like love to Mary and a fervent desire to help the poor souls.

MARIA’S POOR-SOULS-APOSTOLATE

According to Fr Alfons Matt, Maria already from an early age expressed the wish to be of assistance to the Holy Souls in Purgatory; she strove anxiously for every indulgence possible to apply them to the Holy Souls. Maria was exhilarated on learning that one’s suffering can be offered for the Poor Souls too, and at an early age she vowed to therefore suffer on their behalf. Because Maria started to be in contact with the Poor Souls, she was asked time and time again by people how their deceased relations and friends were doing. Maria had dedicated her life to the Poor-Souls-Apostolate.

EVEN ONE SINGLE PRAYER CAN MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE

Henceforth, she led a life of prayer and penance for their release. Her pious, simple life made it possible for her to sense people’s inner needs. At all times she endeavoured to help her fellow men.

Once, for instance, when on a train journey, she overheard a passenger swear most dreadfully and repeatedly from an adjoining compartment. She rose from her seat, accosted the man, and asked him to please refrain from swearing in future. Many years later, the same man approached her after his death as a Poor Soul. He thanked her from the bottom of his heart for having reprimanded him for swearing in the train compartment all those years ago, and for her praying one “Our Father” for him there and then. This saved him from eternal damnation, he explained.

SUFFERING FOR THE POOR SOULS

Well, how did Maria Simma experience the Poor Souls? Since the year 1940 they got in touch with her, requesting prayer assistance. She had taken on suffering for the Souls, whereby the month of November was a time of particular mercy for the Poor Souls in this respect. For Maria Simma, on the other hand, those days meant sheer agony and martyrdom.

This happened in roughly the following pattern: When she suffered for a particular soul it felt for Maria as if her limbs were torn apart. Sharp daggers were stabbed into her body from all sides, or, at other times, it felt like being bludgeoned with a blunt iron rod. The sufferings for abortion and unchastity were searing abdominal pains for Maria, accompanied by dreadful nausea. For the sins of yet other souls she perceived being wedged between blocks of ice for hours on end, the piercing cold penetrating the very marrow of her bones, which constituted her suffering for religious lukewarmness and indifference by particular Souls. Despite it being hard for her at times, Maria took all these sufferings upon herself to help the Poor Souls in whatever way she could. Frequently, the pains were so excruciating that she couldn’t have endured them, had it not been for divine assistance.

SECRET OBSERVERS

The Poor Souls appeared to Maria in various forms and in innumerable ways. At times they knocked at her door, on other occasions they just appeared out of thin air. Some looked like people, yet others were difficult to make out at all. The more the Souls were relieved of their sufferings, the clearer they could be perceived.

Secret observers, who had great doubts about the authenticity of Maria’s “apparition stories” were taught to know better before long. The curiosity of some local lads led them to placing a ladder onto the wall of Maria’s house on 6th December 1954, in order to climb up it and to peer through her window. As the window happened to be open they could, unknown to her, witness what was going on in Maria’s bedroom. To their dismay, the youths heard her moaning and crying, and then again, hear how she was answering to somebody – whereby they could not hear the Soul talking in the first place. Most souls Maria was asked to pray for and requested to pray by she did neither know by name nor from anywhere else.

The Poor Souls even alerted Maria Simma about events to come. On the occasion of a disastrous avalanche in the Austrian Alps in 1954, Maria Simma was told by the Poor Souls that there were still people alive who had been buried by a heap of snow, who needed rescuing. Indeed, two days later even the last victim was extricated from the snow in Blons.

“IT IS A GRACE”

In summary, it can be said that Maria’s gift was a special vocation of mercy to help the Poor Souls. This is also evident from notes on 21st November 1954, where Maria wrote: “Frequently it crossed my mind how I could send the Poor Souls directly to their families instead of them coming to me as a messenger. That would be so much more simple and straightforward! One day, however, one Poor Soul gave me a right rap on the knuckles for entertaining such thoughts: ‘Don’t sin against God’s designs! The Almighty distributes His mercies according to His good pleasure. Never ever will you get the power to send any of the Poor Souls to another mortal person. Do you really think God allows us coming to you because of your merits? If it was about merits, many others would receive this grace instead of you! True, already as a child you helped the Poor Souls, but even that was God’s mercy. Why! Some people may have utilised His mercy even better than you. Apart from the saints who worked great miracles already on earth, there existed at all times even greater saints who, although devoid of the grace to work miracles, they nevertheless attained even greater holiness than those whom the Almighty permitted to work miracles. Never forget this principle: Those privileged with many divine graces accordingly have greater demands placed on them!

“God wills that we always ask Him for His mercies. A good, persevering prayer penetrates the clouds and is answered in precisely the way that is best for the one praying!”

“Especially indulgences are of immeasurable value,” the Poor Souls told Maria on another occasion. The indulgences are, after all, the payment valid with God for temporal sins, the guilt of which has to be paid either during earthly life or after.

VIEWING PURGATORY (THE CLEANSING FIRE)

“The Cleansing Fire is in many places,” Maria Simma once answered a question pertaining to Purgatory. “The souls don’t come to me “from the Cleansing Fire”, rather, they come WITH the Cleansing Fire.” Maria Simma did see the many appearances of the Cleansing Fire in different aspects, once this way, another time, another way. She also related that they were myriads of Souls in the Cleansing Fire. It was and is a continuous coming and going. Once she glimpsed a throng of Souls completely unknown to her. Those Souls who had sinned against their Faith when on earth bore a dark flame in the area of their heart; those, who for instance had sinned by indecency carried a red flame. Then again, she also recognised Poor Souls in groups: priests, monks, catholics, protestants, and pagans. As a whole, catholics were yearning very much indeed, but they got help [Holy Masses, private prayers and sacrifices] and many were released quite swiftly. The protestants were in a lighter Cleansing Fire, but because they get less help their agony in Purgatory is all round for longer – and for pagans, who were in an even lighter Cleansing Fire, their pain is also particularly protracted.

GOD’S WONDERFUL JUSTICE

Because of the help they receive, catholics on average get released much quicker. Maria Simma also noticed nuns and monks in Purgatory, who where there because of previous lukewarmness and even heartlessness. Maria saw children as young as six years in Purgatory.

God’s love and justice was revealed to Maria Simma in a most marvellous harmony; in this way, every Soul was cleansed according to the way and manner of their sins, and depending on the cause of their sins.

The individual severity of suffering varies, according to Maria. Some suffer similar to suffering a tedious life on earth, until they can see God face-to-face. The duration can vary greatly even among individual catholics; for example: Maria’s sufferings released a priest from Cologne who was in Purgatory from about 555 A.D. – Of all Souls [catholics, protestants, pagans] a number have to stay in Purgatory until the Last Day. [Especially with Masses, private prayers etc.] some Souls have to endure Purgatory for just half an hour or even less – some literally simply fly through Purgatory to Heaven.

The devil is also permitted to torment Poor Souls, particularly those through whose partial fault other souls did end up in hell.

HOW THE HOLY SOULS FEEL IN PURGATORY

The Poor Souls, according to Maria Simma, suffer with wonderful patience and praise the mercy of God which made it possible for them not to have landed in hell. They are aware that they deserve their painful longing and the wait for Heaven, and they most profoundly regret their previous sins. They particularly keep on beseeching Mary, Mother of Mercy. Maria encountered many Souls who counted on the help of the Mother of God.

Who thinks, while they are on earth, that Purgatory is quite harmless and therefore takes sin lightly, and sins because of this their attitude, must pay bitterly for that afterwards, relates Maria Simma.

Maria Simma died on 16 March 2004. On 1st November 2004 (All Saints), a metal cross was erected on her grave located in Sonntag cemetery, Grosswalsertal valley, Austria. The inscription reads:

“Only in Eternity will you realise how you have used your lifetime, your years, days, hours, and what you could have done with them. Therefore, do use your lifetime to do everything well.”

“If they only knew what Eternity is really like – what wouldn’t people give in exchange for another chance.”
Quotation from the book by Maria Simma, “My Encounters With Poor Souls”.

 
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Posted by on September 10, 2013 in Prayers for Ordinary Time

 

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