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The physical fire of Purgatory

Image result for souls in purgatory

As we near the end of the Month of All Souls, lest we become lukewarm in our prayers for them, read this powerful story of the reality of the pains and physical fires of Purgatory.

http://traditioninaction.org/religious/h152_Promise.htm

A Promise Fulfilled

by Gregory Johnson

A Dominican religious lived a holy life in his convent at Zamora, a city of the Kingdom of Leon. He was united in the bonds of a pious friendship with a Franciscan brother like himself, a man of great virtue.

medieval illumination showing two monks conversing
A Dominican and Franciscan make a deal

One day, when conversing together on the subject of eternity, they mutually promised that, if it pleased God, the first who died should appear to the other to give him some salutary advice. The Friar Minor died first and one day, while his Dominican friend was preparing the refectory, he appeared to him.

After saluting him with respect and affection, he told him that he was among the elect, but that before he could be admitted to the enjoyment of eternal happiness, there remained much to be suffered for an infinity of small faults of which he had not sufficiently repented during his life.

“Nothing on earth,” he added, “can give an idea of the torments which I endure, and of which God permits me to give you a visible proof.”

Saying these words, he placed his right hand upon the table of the refectory, and the mark remained impressed upon the charred wood as though it had been applied with a red-hot iron. Such was the lesson which the fervent deceased Franciscan gave to his living friend. It was of profit not only to him, but to all those who came to see the burnt mark, for this table became an object of piety which people came from all parts to look upon.

“It is still to be seen at Zamora” says Father Rossignoli, “at the time I write. To protect it the spot has been covered with a sheet of copper” It was preserved until the end of the last century. Since then it has been destroyed during the revolutions, like so many other religious memorials.

This instance, which happened in Spain, is related in the History of Saint Dominic by Ferdinand of Castile.

Adapted from The Dogma of Purgatory by F. X. Schouppe, SJ,
London: Burns & Oats, 1893, pp. 43-44
Posted November 18, 2017

 

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SSPX restores St. Willibrord Church in the Netherlands

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The fruits of the Traditional Faith as kept by the SSPX are blooming in full fruition, evident in the story of this church preserved for what it was built for – the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

http://sspx.org/en/news-events/news/netherlands-sspx-restores-st-willibrords-utrecht-catholic-worship-33573

On November 12, 2017, the day after the feast of St. Martin, patron saint of the archdiocese of Utrecht, Bishop Fellay, Superior General of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X, reconciled the church of St. Willibrord.

The church is situated in the historic center of the city of Utrecht, and 600 faithful from the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany were present. The ceremony began with the rite of reconciliation that the Roman Pontifical prescribes for restoring a sacred building to Catholic worship after it has been used for secular purposes. The bishop first blessed the “Gregorian water”, a mixture of water, wine, salt, and ashes, then sprinkled the interior walls and the ground in the form of a cross, in order to purify the church of its profane defilements.

In his sermon, Bishop Fellay reminded the faithful that the artistic beauty of this place of worship is a reflection of the divine beauty, of which the Christian soul is also an image. He went on to point out that this sacred building has now been restored to the traditional liturgy for which it was built and that “has never been abrogated”, as pope emeritus Benedict XVI declared in his Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum on July 7, 2007, although certain members of the hierarchy claimed it had been. The ceremony continued with a Pontifical High Mass celebrated from the faldstool, directed by the seminarians of Zaitzkofen, and enhanced by the magnificent sounds of the sumptuous organ and the baroque pieces that were sung most excellently and professionally.

After a luncheon attended by most of the faithful, the day drew to a close with Eucharistic adoration and the recitation of the rosary in this splendid church that is henceforth destined exclusively to the true worship of the one true Lord and Master of the universe.

The church was built in the 1870s, when the Catholic hierarchy was reestablished in the Netherlands. Nestled in the historic center of Utrecht, it is one of the city’s hidden treasures and one of the country’s most beautiful neo-Gothic churches. The Society of St. Pius X has just purchased this monumental jewel.

Richly decorated and perfectly preserved after a splendid interior restoration, the edifice offers a unique example of the spirit of medieval art from before Calvinist iconoclasm. The monumental organ – built by Michaël Maarschalkerweerd – is one of the building’s major attractions.

After the disaster of the Second Vatican Council, this jewel came close to being destroyed. It was saved thanks to the persistence of Fr. Winand Kotte and was classified as a historical monument and designated as a trial project for the preservation of the European architectural heritage.

By restoring true worship to an architectural jewel consecrated to St. Willibrord (657-739), the first bishop of Utrecht, apostle of Frisia and the Netherlands, where his feast is celebrated on November 7, the Society offers a concrete illustration of its holy Patron’s papal motto: omnia instaurare in Christo.

Source : FSSPX-News – 11/15/17

Purgatory

We must alleviate the Souls in Purgatory from their sufferings, since we have the intercessory power with God to free them for heaven, where one day we hope to one day join them

Damsel of the Faith

During this Month of the Holy Souls, let us reflect on Purgatory and the great justice and mercy of God in providing such a place of purification for those saved:

Sermon by Fr. P.A. Sheehan D.D.:

THE COMMUNION OF SAINTS

One of the most beautiful and divine doctrines of the Catholic Church, dear brethren, is that which is professed under the title of “Communion of Saints.” It is, as it were, a loving concession on the part of Almighty God that He suffers us to think of our friends, whom He has called into their rest. He is a jealous God; one condition He is forever insisting upon as necessary to our salvation–that is, that we should give Him our whole beings, every act we perform, every thought we think. But He knows what the human heart is, He who loved so tenderly the Mother who bore Him, and He…

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The reality of Purgatory

Pray for the Holy Souls in Purgatory!

Damsel of the Faith

During this Month of the Holy Souls, I offer a sermon from Archbishop Lefebvre, given on November 1, 1978 in Econe, Switerzerland:

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

My dear friends and my dear brethren: The Church has the custom of associating the souls in Purgatory with the Feast of All Saints. In fact, from this evening (Vespers of All Souls Day), the Church asks us to pray for the souls in Purgatory and tomorrow the entire day is consecrated to them. The priests who will celebrate three Masses tomorrow, to beseech Our Lord to deliver the souls from Purgatory, may apply to each of their Masses a plenary indulgence for the souls in Purgatory. This is why, during these few moments, I would like to draw your attention to, and have you reflect upon, the reality of Purgatory and…

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Removed by the police for praying the rosary

 

https://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2017/10/catholics-praying-hail-mary-removed-by.html#more

In Brussels Cathedral, in the midst of a celebration of the Portestant Revolt, these young Catholics prayed the rosary in reparation. The enemies of Our Lord and the the Church had these faithful young souls thrown out of the church. The fact that the revolutionary rebellion of Luther is extolled and celebrated is a great thorn in the side of Our Lord.  Millions of souls have been thrown from salvation due to the Protestant revolt. Those who know not Christ will be thrown to the pit of hell. Pray for the lost souls.

“We do not hesitate to affirm again publicly that We put great confidence in the Holy Rosary for the healing of evils which afflict our times. Not with force, not with arms, not with human power, but with Divine help obtained through the means of this prayer, strong like David with his sling, the Church undaunted shall be able to confront the infernal enemy, repeating to him the words of the young shepherd: ‘Thou comest to me with a sword, and a spear, and with a shield; but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of Hosts, the God of armies…and all this assembly shall know that the Lord saveth not with sword and spear, for this is his battle, and he will deliver you into our hands’ -I Kings 17, 45-47)” ~Pope Pius XII, “Ingruentium Malorum”, 1951 A.D.

Blessed are you, fellow soldiers, when they revile you and persecute you.

 

Feast of All Saints

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A sermon by Fr. Francis Xavier Weinger, 1876. All ye holy saints of God, pray for us.

“The Catholic Church, which, every day in the year, places some Saints before our eyes to honor and imitate, represents them all to us today; hence today’s festival is called: The Feast of All Saints. The origin of it was as follows : There was, at Rome, a magnificent temple, which had been built before Christ, by Marcus Agrippa, and was called the Pantheon or Temple of all the gods, because they were all worshiped therein. This idolatrous temple had not been torn down like many others, but Pope Boniface IV. consecrated it according to Catholic usage, to the Virgin Mother and all the Saints. To the greater edification of the people, he had many relics of holy Martyrs placed in it with due magnificence, whence this Church received the name of the Church of the holy Martyrs.

In after years, it was ordered by Pope Gregory IV. that, not only the festival of the holy Martyrs, but also that of all other Saints, should be celebrated in the above mentioned Church and in all Christendom. The reasons for instituting this festival were the following: First, it cannot be doubted that the number of Saints who reign with Christ in heaven is very large. “I saw so large a number,” says St. John, ” that nobody could count them.” To speak only of those who became martyrs for Christ’s sake, they, according to authentic historians, already in the first centuries of the Church, numbered 17 millions. Who can count the other Saints, as well of the Clergy as the laity, who served God faithfully and died in His grace? The number of the Saints is very great, but most of them are unknown to us. We know the names of the holy Apostles, of many apostolic men, many founders of religious orders, many popes, bishops, religious, hermits, virgins, widows, married people, nobles, princes, kings and emperors; but there is a number far exceeding these, whose very names are unknown to us. And as it is but just that we, who are yet in the Church Militant and are united by the bond of charity with the Saints, should honor them duly, as they are honored as true servants and friends by the Almighty Himself, the holy Church has appointed this day for honoring them all together, as it is not possible to consecrate a separate day to each of them.

The second reason is contained in the prayer which the Church on this day recites in Holy Mass: “That on account of the great number of our intercessors, God may bestow on us, more abundantly, the desired gifts of His liberality.” No Catholic doubts that the Saints in heaven, because they enjoy the favor of the Almighty, can obtain for us by their intercession many graces, of which we are not worthy, on account of our sins. For, it is known that, while they were still living on earth, they not only averted much evil from mankind by their intercession, but also drew down many benefits upon them. That we may therefore obtain more surely all that we need or that is useful for our salvation, the holy Church has ordered that we shall today call upon all the Saints as our intercessors, trusting implicitly that the Most High will not disregard the entreaties of so many of His friends.

The third reason is as follows: The Church according to St. Bernard, represents to us so many Saints, in every station in life, to encourage us so that we may not only venerate them, but also imitate their virtues; and that as we call them blessed, so we too should strive after that salvation which they have already attained. Hence, also, the Gospel of the Eight Beatitudes is read today; as in it the road is pointed out and explained, by which the Saints have reached heaven; a road which we too must walk, if we wish to join them in heaven. We will now explain, in few words, three other points, namely; what we ought especially to meditate upon, to learn and to do, on this day. In regard to the first of these points, we ought to meditate on the happiness of the Saints in heaven, and on the way they walked, or the means they employed to attain their blessedness. This blessedness, to say much in few words, is so great, that it can neither be described nor comprehended. “We can obtain it,” says St. Augustine, “but cannot esteem it too highly. No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and it has not entered into the heart of man, what God has prepared for those that love Him,” that is, for the Saints in heaven.

The happiness of the least Saint in heaven is inexpressibly greater than the most perfect happiness on earth. We esteem those on earth happy, who are not persecuted, nor poor, nor sick, nor despised; but who are distinguished by their high rank, and are honored by all; who enjoy health, and possess a superfluity of riches and pleasures. And yet, how few ever attain such temporal happiness, and when they have attained it, how uncertain they are in its possession! But the happiness of the Saints is true, real happiness; for, nothing is wanted to make it most perfect. They are free from everything that could in the least sadden them; they possess all that can make them glad, all that they can desire, nay, much more than they can desire. They are surrounded by joys, they swim in happiness. Therefore it is written: ” Enter into the joys of the Lord!” The happiness of the Saints is a secure happiness; for they have nothing to fear. No one can disturb their joy; no one can lessen it; no one can take it away from them. But what increases the bliss of the Saints most is the thought that it shall last eternally.

The Saints are in glory, and for evermore. They are filled with joys for evermore, for all eternity. They possess all honor and wealth, and all without end, without interruption. Oh! how great a bliss! But how have the Saints attained it? By the use of those means which God has left in His Church, by true faith; by holy baptism; by observing the Commandments, by avoiding sin, by practicing good works, by patience in crosses and sufferings. They walked in the path which Christ shows us in His holy Gospel, the path of innocence, or the path of penance. They served God faithfully and constantly while they were on earth; they earnestly worked for the salvation of their souls; they either committed no sin, or did true penance. When God sent them poverty, sickness, or other adversity, they bore it with Christian patience. In this manner, they attained to such great and eternal felicity. From all this you will doubtless be able to draw the lessons which today’s festival offers. I will here give them to you in still shorter form.

Learn, firstly, how true to His promise God is and how richly He recompenses His servants. He leaves not the least good unrewarded, and the recompense He gives is great and eternal. For short labor and suffering, He gives great and everlasting joys. Who would not willingly serve so liberal a Master? Who would not gladly labor and suffer for Him? Who, that longs so ardently for the possession of mere temporal happiness, can hesitate to aim, with all the powers of his mind, at the eternal bliss prepared for the servants of the Most High? Should not every one be animated by the thought of eternal felicity, faithfully and zealously to serve the Lord?

Learn, secondly, that we can gain Heaven in any station of life; for in any station, we can make use of those means which God has given us to work out our salvation. In Heaven there are Saints of all ranks and conditions; emperors and empresses; kings and queens; princes and princesses; nobles and plebeians; learned men and unlettered men; poor and rich; officers and soldiers; magistrates, artisans and peasants; man-servants and maid-servants; unmarried and married persons; widowers and widows; youths, maidens and children. Many Saints lived in the same station in which you live; from it, they went to heaven; and so may you. You have only to live in your station as they did and use the means for your salvation as they used them.

Learn, thirdly, that you will have only yourself to blame, if you do not go to heaven to join the Saints; for, God asks no more from you than from them, and gives you the same means for salvation that He gave to them. The Saints were like you, human beings; like you, they lived in dangers and temptations; like you, they suffered and struggled; and yet they served God and went to heaven. Are you unable to do what they did? You are certainly able, if you have but a true and earnest desire to succeed. If you have it not, the fault is entirely your own. The example of so many Saints, who lived in your station, will convict you of falsehood, if you say that your station prevents you from gaining life everlasting.

All that now remains is to consider what must be done to celebrate today’s festival worthily. A few words will teach you this. If you desire to attain the end and aim of this feast, endeavor according to the instructions of holy Church to honor the Saints of the Almighty and invoke them as powerful intercessors at His throne. They are true servants and friends of God, and they are honored by Him. Their intercession is all-powerful with the Almighty. While still on earth, they obtained for others great gifts from God; why then should they not be able to do so now that they are in heaven? To say that the Saints know nothing of us or of our prayers, is a sign of ignorance, and is against Holy Writ; for, we are assured therein that the Saints are equal to the Angels, and we can not doubt that these have knowledge of us and of our prayers. The Gospel tells us that they rejoice when a sinner does penance; and St. John says that they offer our prayers to God. Hence, call on the Saints with confidence, that, through the merits of Christ, they would obtain for you the grace to live so that you may one day join them. But above all, endeavor to imitate the virtues of the Saints, as this is the best way to honor them. Each Saint calls from Heaven to us, in the words that St. Paul wrote to the Corinthians: ” Be my followers,” imitate my example. This is especially the call of those Saints, who lived in your station.

If you would enjoy their society in heaven, you must live as they lived on earth. To live as those lived who are in hell, and yet to hope to go, after this life, where they are whom we venerate as Saints, is senseless. Live as the Saints lived, and you will go to heaven as they did. Walk in their footsteps. No one ever obtained life everlasting without the true faith. No one was saved by faith alone. The Saints labored and suffered for heaven. You too must labor and suffer; heaven is worth it.”

 

Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christum imperat!

Viva Christo Rey! A Blessed Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King to you all!

Damsel of the Faith

October 29th marks the glorious Solemnity of Christ the King.  Here is my post from last year:

https://damselofthefaith.wordpress.com/2014/10/25/christ-the-king/

Please give Pope Pius XI’s Encyclical on the Feast of Christ the King a read.  A very important Encyclical on the Social Kingship of Christ the King:

http://www.catholictradition.org/Encyclicals/primas.htm

Let us pray that Christ will once again be King over Society and dare we say, acknowledged as King within the Church, for He has been dethroned.

Viva Christo Rey!  Our Lord is our King and He rules over His Kingdom, the Catholic Church, forever and ever!

A Blessed Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King to all!

The following is a sermon from Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre for the Feast of Christ the King, given October 28, 1979:

My dear brethren,

In the magnificent encyclical Quas Primas of His Holiness Pope Pius XI, instituting the Feast of Christ the King, the Pope explains…

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