Praying for All Souls
by Cynthia Marie – Catholic News
On Wednesday, November 2, we will celebrate All Souls Day, but for Catholics the entire month of November is dedicated to praying for the souls in Purgatory.
Purgatory is the name the Church gives to the final purification after death and judgment, a period when those who die in God’s grace and friendship undergo a purification to achieve the holiness necessary to enter into the joy of heaven. All souls in Purgatory are assured of eternal salvation, but they must first be cleansed of all their lesser sins before they can enter the glory of heaven.DOWNLOAD THE BULLETIN
But what about those souls we don’t think were in a state of grace when they died? Should we continue to pray for our loved ones who were fallen-away Catholics? Our atheist friends? Or what about those (uncanonized) people who lived such holy lives that we figure they must already be in heaven?
When we’re talking about the communion of saints and the body of Christ, there are all kinds of questions that come up with this topic, like whether we’ll all enter heaven at the same time or whether it’s an immediate judgment. The Catechism says there’s an immediate judgment, but what does that mean when there’s no time? You can kind of go cross-eyed and get a headache after a while.
So in fact, just keep praying. Never could we just give up hope and say, “Well, this person is probably in hell. I’m going to stop praying for them.” That’s not Christian. In fact, in the book of Romans we hear “hope against hope” – that’s faith. That was Abraham’s faith, and that’s who Catholics are. We’re the ones who hope against all hope that Jesus can purify and can save. We can’t draw conclusions, we just keep praying.”
All Saints/All Souls Schedule:
6:00pm VIGIL MASS: Monday, October 31
All Saints Day: Tuesday, November 1 – Holy Day
8:00am & 12:00pm Masses, 8:00pm Vietnamese Mass
All SOULS Day: Wednesday, November 2
8:00am Mass & 6:00pm Prayer service in the Memorial Garden. The names of the deceased that will be read are those who have died during this past year and, either their Funeral Mass was held at St. John XXIII or buried here. All present will have an opportunity to pray for their loved one.