Gratitude of the Holy Souls.
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.
Gratitude of the Holy Souls.
The prayers and works of charity which we bestow on the suffering soul in Purgatory, not only increase our spiritual merit, they also call forth the gratitude of the holy ransomed souls; for, when these dear souls are, by our endeavors, admitted to the vision of God, they cease not to prove the warmth of their thankfulness and love by imploring for us the help of which we are so much in need in the manifold dangers and great troubles of life. How can the faithful departed who are loved by God so tenderly, and predestined to glory, fail to pray, not indeed for themselves, but for their benefactors who still live in this vale of tears. Not only will they speedily pay their debt of gratitude to those who befriend them, but our dear Lord Himself, whose greater honor and glory we have promoted by our devotion to the holy souls, will readily assist them to requite the services rendered them by the faithful upon earth. St. Alphonsus of Liguori says: “He who assists these distressed souls, so tenderly loved by God, may confidently hope for his salvation; for when such a soul obtains deliverance through his prayers and good works, it incessantly prays for his salvation, and God will deny nothing to such a soul.”
Prayer: We beseech Thee, O Lord, vouchsafe to hear the suffering souls, who supplicate Thee for their benefactors, that we, in union with these holy souls, for whom we offer fervent prayers upon earth may praise Thy mercies forever. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen.
Special Intercession: Pray for the souls who suffer for their faults against charity.
Lord grant them eternal rest, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen. (Three times.)
Practice: Bestow charity upon others without expecting gratitude.
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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