Meditations on the Poor Souls in Purgatory – November 5th

The Reason of Purgatory


The doctrine of Purgatory is like all the teaching of the Church, perfectly reasonable. There are many good men and women, loving God above all things, who have often made good acts of contrition for their past sins, but they are nevertheless still very imperfect. It would be strange if they who commit many daily faults, of which some are deliberate and are done with a full knowledge that they displease God, should at once take their place in the company of the Saints. It would jar upon our ideas of what is required by the holiness and majesty of God.Most men have never had a sorrow for sin corresponding to its true character. It has not been, in any wise, equivalent to the malice of sin, or the insult offered by it to Almighty God. They have paid but a very small portion of the debt due, and though Our Lord’s merits are of infinite value, yet: they have not availed themselves of them as they might. The remainder of this debt must be paid before the justice of God is satisfied.

Most men up to the end of their lives are still attached to some fault or imperfection displeasing to God. They know it is not a serious sin and, therefore, they think too lightly of it, and do not make the efforts they might to overcome it. When death comes, they see it in its true light, and are pierced with sorrow and dismay and hatred of themselves, and a desire to make satisfaction to God by suffering the penalty of their sin. Ask yourself whether you have reason to fear on any of these counts.

Sorrowful floral strip

The Devout Year by the Rev. R.F. Clarke, S.J.

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