Tuesday, December 19, 2006
Holy Souls Novena: Day Four

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 4

Swiftly the memory even of the dear dead seems to pass from human minds. Memory is like the tears upon a coffin, swiftly evaporated, quickly dried. The rush of the days fills the minds and hands of the living. The press of old associations and the establishment of new friends helps supplant and elbow into the dusty corners of our minds the friends now hidden in God's penitentiary. But these prisoners do not forget us.

In the slow, painful dragging of the days they have time to remember. They are so hungry for God that they have little heart for new companions. They are made sensitive---to memory, to neglect, to hope for deliverance, to the knowledge that those who once cried aloud their love have so swiftly forgotten.

With gratitude do they think of those who do remember them. With sadness they think of those who have so swiftly dropped them. They pray to God, who loves them even in their exile, for the thoughtful and the mindful. They beg that those who have pushed them away for the near and the living will drop into their prison house a thought, a prayer, a good deed in ransom.

Remembering our own dear dead, we pray for them:

The Prayer for the Holy Souls

O God, the Creator 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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