Thursday, November 1, 2007

All Souls Day, November 2

"It is a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they might be loosed from their sins." (2 Machabees 12: 46) These words reflect the Jewish origins of the practice of praying for the dead, a practice continued by the Church. On All Souls Day, every priest has the privilege of celebrating three Masses. A full plenary indulgence can be gained for a soul of the faithful departed on November 2 and on everyday of the week that follows, by fulfilling the usual conditions.

However, it is not only on All Souls Day but on every day of the year that Holy Mother Church prays for her departed children. Every Mass is offered for both the living and the dead. According to the Council of Trent, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the chief means of bringing succor to the souls in Purgatory.

The prayers and good works of the faithful can also benefit the dead. St. Teresa of Avila had a great love for the suffering souls, a love that was willing to bear the vicissitudes of life in order to aid them.

Purgatory is not inevitable, but we can undergo our purgation here on earth by our patient endurance of trials. It is not the intensity of the trial itself that expiates sin; rather it is the intensity of the love for God with which the trial is accepted. Love is what matters most. Share

1 comment:

elena maria vidal said...

Indulgences for the Poor Souls
Current regulations in force by Pope Benedict XVI

I On All Souls' Day (Nov. 2) a plenary indulgence, applicable only
to the Poor Souls, is granted to those who visit any parish church
or public oratory and there recite one Our Father and one Credo.

II On all the days from November I though November 8 inclusive, a
plenary indulgence, applicable only to the Poor Souls, is granted
to those who visit a cemetery and pray even if only mentally for
the departed.

Conditions for both indulgences:

1. Only one plenary indulgence can be granted per day.

2. It is necessary to be in the state of grace, at least by
completion of the work.

3. Freedom from attachment to sin, even venial sin, is necessary;
otherwise the indulgence is only partial. (By this is meant
attachment to a particular sin, not sin in general.)

4. Holy Communion must be received each time the indulgence is

5. Prayers must be recited for the intentions of the Holy Father on
each day the indulgence is sought. (No particular prayers are
prescribed. One Our Father and one Hail Mary suffice, or other
suitable prayers.

6. A sacramental confession must he made within a week of
completion of the prescribed work. (One confession made during the
week, made with the intention of gaining all the indulgences,