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Sunday, December 17, 2006
Holy Souls Novena: Day Two
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Our Lady, Mother Mary, has said that more souls are released from Purgatory on Christmas than any other day in the year.

This novena was written by Daniel Lord, S.J.

Day 2

Nothing else is humanly harder to bear than painful waiting. All the souls in purgatory are sure one day to reach heaven. They know how wonderful heaven is and how desirable is God. But they cannot follow the violent impulse that drives them toward their happiness. They must hunger for God and still be withheld from the possession of Him. In hell there is only bleak and hopeless despair. In purgatory there is hope and certainty and love and eagerness---and long periods of waiting.... waiting... waiting....

There is suffering too in purgatory, the suffering that washes away in flame the stains of guilt and cleanses as with fire the soul that will eventually enter into the presence of the spotless God. But the real pain of purgatory is that awful eagerness for God, who is just out of reach, and that longing to go home to heaven, which is almost seen but as yet unattainable. Nothing defiled can enter heaven; that we know. So purgatory is the place where defilement is removed, where the souls that are destined for glory are prepared by punishment and tedious delay for their glorious homecoming with God.

For the love we bear our friends in purgatory we pray:

The Prayer for the Holy Souls

O God, the Creater and Redeemer of all the faithful, grant to the souls of thy servants and handmaids departed, the remission of all their sins; that through pious supplications they may obtain the pardon they have always desired. Who livest and reignest with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen

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