Pain of Helplessness and Desolation.
PRAYER BEFORE MEDITATION.
My God, I firmly believe that Thou art here present. I acknowledge that on account of my many sins I am utterly unworthy to appear before Thy sacred countenance. Yet, confiding in Thy infinite goodness and mercy, I venture to address Thee, to call upon Thy holy name, and meditate upon Thy commandments, in order that I may acquire a better knowledge of Thy holy will, and accomplish it with more fidelity. Wherefore enlighten my understanding that I may perceive what I ought to do or leave undone for the promotion of Thy glory and my own salvation; at the same time excite my will, that I may repent with my whole heart of my past sins, and resolve for the future to do all that Thou requirest of me. Grant me above all to know Jesus, my divine Teacher and Guide, more clearly, that I may love Him more dearly, and consequently labor, struggle and suffer with greater generosity and self-sacrifice in imitation of His example. Holy Mary, Mother of God and my Mother, show Jesus to me now, and let me study thy divine Son to the salvation of my soul. Holy Guardian Angel, keep far from me all distracting thoughts; my patron saint, come to my assistance. Amen.
Pain of Helplessness and Desolation.
The souls in Purgatory have entered into the realm of Divine Justice. The penance and satisfaction due for their faults must be made, either by the pain of Purgatory itself, or by the suffrages of the faithful, consisting in prayer, good works and the spiritual treasure of indulgences bestowed upon them; for the suffering souls can no longer merit and are entirely unable to assist themselves. A sick man and a beggar have a tongue to ask for help, and the very sight of their misery will move others to compassion. The suffering souls, however, have no resource but that of patience, resignation and hope. To all their moans there is but one answer, “the night hath come, in which no man can work.”
Hence in their extreme desolation and distress, they incessantly cry out to us for relief and assistance. But since they cannot do this in a manner perceptible to us, holy Church does it for them by instituting many touching devotions in their behalf. Can we, then, be cold and heartless towards these souls? “A hard heart will fare evil at the last.” Be not, then, indifferent to your own interests.
Prayer: Have mercy, O Lord, upon the suffering souls in Purgatory, in their helplessness and desolation. Comfort them by the prayers and petitions of the just in Heaven and upon earth; shorten the time of their suffering, and reward them with joys eternal. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen.
Special Intercession: Pray for the most forsaken and helpless souls. Lord grant them eternal rest, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen. ( Three times}
Practice: Deny yourself a little comfort, or some special consolation, and offer it for the most forsaken souls in Purgatory.
Invocation: My Jesus, mercy!
(100 days’ Indulgence every time. Pius IX.).
PRAYER AFTER MEDITATION.
My God, I give Thee heartfelt thanks for all the graces and all the light Thou hast conferred on me during this meditation. Pardon me all the negligence and the distractions of which I have been guilty, and give me strength to carry out the resolutions that I have made. Fortify me, that from henceforth I may diligently practise this virtue . . . avoid this fault . . . perform this action . . . to Thy honor. Help me to do this, sweet Virgin Mary; and if I ever forget my good resolutions, I entreat my Angel Guardian to recall them to my memory. Amen.
November Devotion: The Holy Souls in Purgatory.
Virtues to practice: Charity and kindness.
Most loving Jesus, I humbly beseech Thee, that Thou Thyself wouldst offer to Thine eternal Father in behalf of the Holy Souls in purgatory, the Most Precious Blood which poured forth from the sacred wounds of Thine adorable Body, together with Thine agony and death. And do thou likewise, O sorrowful Virgin Mary, present unto Him, together with the dolorous Passion of thy dear Son, thine own sighs and tears, and all the sorrows thou didst suffer in His suffering, in order that, through the merits of the same, refreshment may be granted to the souls now suffering in the fiery torments of purgatory, so that, being delivered from that painful prison, they may be clothed with glory in heaven, there to sing the mercies of God for ever and ever. Amen.
Absolve, O Lord, the souls of all the faithful departed from every bond of sin, that with Thy gracious assistance they may deserve to escape the judgment of vengeance and enjoy the blessedness of everlasting light.
V. Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord
R. And let perpetual light shine upon them.
V. From the gates of hell,
R. Deliver their souls, O Lord.
V. May they rest in peace.
V. O Lord, hear my prayer.
R. And let my cry come unto Thee.
Let us pray.
O, God, the Creator and Redeemer of all the faithful; grant unto the souls of Thy servants and handmaids the remission of all their sins: that through our devout supplications they may obtain the pardon they have always desired. Who livest and reignest world without end. Amen.
Eternal rest, etc.
An indulgence of 3 years. A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions, if these prayers are said daily for a month (S. C. md., Sept. 15, 1888; S. P. Ap., April 25, 1934).
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