Prayers for the departed souls is as important as oxygen for the living.
Anyone of us could die suddenly and find ourselves stranded on the lost continent of purgatory. Scripture tells us that our lives are like a flower of the field, like grass which flowers in the morning and grows dry and withers in the evening. Our Lady of Medjugorje also reminds us of the quickness of the passage of life; â€œEverything is passing, little children; only God is not passing.â€
Pope John Paul II defined purgatory like this: â€œEvery trace of attachment to evil must be eliminated, every imperfection of the soul corrected. Purification must be complete, and indeed this precisely what is meant by the Churchâ€™s teaching on purgatory.â€ To achieve this we must pray. We have this tremendous energy in us and prayer gets us in touch with that energy.
Prayer unleashes souls from purgatory through the Mass, the highest form of prayer.
In Rome there is a Church called the Church of the Suffering Souls. In that Church there is a small museum with relics from souls who touched objects and scorched them to show the purifying spiritual fires (and to indicate the desperate need for our Masses to move them on to Heaven). Every relic has a story. Every story has the same theme. Purgatory exists, and they were in desperate need of Masses. Once the soul leaves the body all merits ceases. For the poor souls their work does not count. It is penal labor – a wearing out of oneâ€™s self without any effect. Their efforts obtain nothing. It flows, yet dries up as a river in the sand. Such is the life of the poor souls in purgatory.
At wakes do we hear the need to pray for the souls of our loved ones? We must remember that our faith requires our prayers to help our loved ones join the house of the Lord. Very few of us have souls free from defects â€” but with our prayers we can create a soul without blemish. Pope Benedict XVI stated that â€œif we did not have the doctrine of purgatory we would need to invent it!â€
Do we have time for our departed loved ones? Do we have time to help our friends reach high places before the throne of God? You can help them. They are poor you are rich. The can do nothing for themselves; you can do everything for them. They can no longer assist at holy Mass and cleanse themselves in the Blood of Christ; you can offer the holy sacrifice and Christâ€™s Precious Blood for them. They can no longer eat the Bread of Life; you can receive it for them in Holy Communion. They can no longer perform good works or pay their debt by giving alms; you can do it for them! They can no longer draw from graces of the church you can apply your indulgences to them. Your prayers descend to them like refreshing dew and speed them home to Heaven.
Even though the holy souls can do nothing for themselves, they can do much for us once they enter the gate of heaven. Oh, how we need that prayer in the dangers and troubles of this life; and how we shall long for their prayers when we may have to languish in purgatory.
Our Lady of Medjugorje told visionary Mirjana that in Purgatory there are several levels. The more you pray on earth, the higher your level in purgatory will be. The lowest level is closest to hell where the suffering is the most intense. The highest level is closest to Heaven and there the sufferings are the least.
Goto Prayer for Souls in Purgatory
– – – written by Susan Tassone
8 thoughts on “Why Pray For The Departed Souls”
Thank you for this article! I totally “get” why we pray for those who have died; as a practicing Catholic I compeletely understand and accept the doctrine of purgatory. What I have trouble with, is explaining in an easy-to-understand-fashion this doctrine to Protestant friends. They just can’t seem to get past “well Jesus died for our sins and has paid the full price…. etc”. Any suggestions on how to simplify this doctrine, or is it just that my protestant friends are too stubborn ????? (lol)
Just came across this 1999 talk by John Paul II on Purgatory:
“As we have seen in the previous two catecheses, on the basis of the definitive option for or against God, the human being finds he faces one of these alternatives: either to live with the Lord in eternal beatitude, or to remain far from his presence.
For those who find themselves in a condition of being open to God, but still imperfectly, the journey towards full beatitude requires a purification, which the faith of the Church illustrates in the doctrine of “Purgatory” (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 1030-1032).
Read more at http://romereturn.blogspot.com/2009/12/pope-john-paul-ii-on-purgatory.html
As far as I know, the ‘events’ at Medjugorje are still under investigation, therefore I think it unwise for Susan Tassone to cite them as a credible source.
When I was in the high school, my teacher told me that I shouldn’t pray for any departed souls. She said that our relationship with the departed souls has been disconnected. Even prayers wouldn’t be able to reach them.
Several months ago, my Dad died. I rarely prayed for him during his lifetime. And everytime I want to lift a prayer for him after his death, I always remember my teacher’s statement mentioned above.
Now, I am very relieved to know that my prayers aren’t in vain. Thank you for sharing this article. Gbu.
Thr is no such concept of praying for departed souls inside Bible. U can only find answers for this frm man. God never asked anyone to pray for the departed souls. Visit http://www.jesus-is-savior.com u can see evils tat happening in today’s world and how to overcome our foolishness. God bless.
I do believe prayers is most powerful , it helps the departed soul in purgatory ,praying to them purified their soul to be in heaven…. Catholic teachings is not only on the bible alone; the traditon, messages of the Blessed Virgin,and the Saints are source of truth and teachings to understand the mystery of our life… God’s mercy and knowledge is revealed in may ways, just have faith and do good everyday,…. prayers is the best we can do….
poorest poor thing is that you people don’t read BIBLE properly.even if you read, maybe only the promise words or some story lines. whatever you do,however you pray,wherever you worship,just check,is it right or wrong with BIBLE.if it is written in BIBLE or not.a true christian’s (catholic or protestant)duty is to obey the WORD OF GOD. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;1tim 2:5.but many people uses many mediators,whoever already dead.the people whoever whoever WHOEVER already dead are dead.they cannot be a mediator.and praying for them also won’t work.because,- And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.-
Rev22:12.this is the WORD OF GOD.whatever you do when you are alive,is to be counted.and after your death nobody can work for you.so when you are alive do according to BIBLE.BIBLE is the true LAW.do not believe any pope,father,pastor or preacher if they are going out of BIBLE.these people have changed a lot of laws according to their own will,(Read history of popes, encyclopedia of catholic.) so READ READ READ BIBLE.and FOLLOW IT.GOD BLESS YOU.
Only Jesus and His blood can wash our sins and save us from Satan and his evil activities. Without Jesus we can’t do anything.If we just depend upon us we CAN’T do any good deeds, virtues or we can follow His Holy Spirit. So as the scripture says “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10.17)pls try to hear and read maxmimum word of God with prayer and under the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.In the Bible we can’t see a place like purgatory. If such doctrines are not there in Bible you should be very careful in believing those things. We have only few things given by Lord, one is Jesus and the other is word of God. Pray well for the right direction from Holy Spirit; God bless you.