Sunday, November 22, 2015

November Thoughts on Purgatory

Back in the early 70's as as seminarian in Rome there was on the book market in English something less than a coffee table edition of a picture book with a brief and easy to read text; I think the title was "Rome, the Fifth Day". It was partly meant as a guide for folks who spent more than the standard few days in the Eternal City and pointed out sights beyond the usual which were well worth seeing. One of those which, even in eight years in the Urbs, I never got to was the Purgatory Museum. It included artifacts, like fiery hand prints, from Poor Souls who besought prayers from the living such that they might complete their painful purification and pass into the glories of the Heavenly Kingdom.

I'm not going to take a stance one way or the other as to whether the Holy Souls have permission to rattle our cages or nerves in supplication for the prayers and sacrifices from us the living to hasten the completion of their purgation. I will just urge the reader to pray insistently for those who have gone before us that the expiation of the punishment due for sins committed and forgiven might quickly come to pass.

Not to be outdone by the Purgatory Museum, however, I want to relate a November experience which moved me to celebrate Mass again after some years for a younger friend who died of leukemia time back and whom I always considered an integral and zealous priest. Shortly after his death I cancelled him from Facebook but still received birthday reminders.... No big thing, given the way Facebook works! However! Finally, the other day, on the recommendation of technicians both in Ukraine and here in Switzerland, I changed phones when I signed my postpaid contract for cell service here in Bern. Against my own better judgment I succumbed to pressure also from my secretary to go with an IPhone, as this was supposed to better assure if not guarantee a break with my past and the menace of continued surveillance by whomever. As my dear Mother used to say, "Whatever!"

Despite my best efforts I lost all my phone contacts in the transition and must recopy them by hand from my computer... that is, with the exception of one which just popped up! You guessed it: that of my dear departed friend! Hence the Holy Mass for the repose of his immortal soul. May he and all the faithful departed mercifully rest in peace! 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.