A reading from the holy Gospel according to John 6:37-40
Jesus said to the crowds: “Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me, because I came down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me. And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it on the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him on the last day.”
REFLECTION: " For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him on the last day.”
"As we enter heaven we will see them, so many of them coming towards us and thanking us. We will ask who they are and they will say a poor soul you prayed for in purgatory." (Blessed Fulton Sheen)
Grave sin separates us from God and deprives us of Communion with God; therefore, depriving us of eternal life. If we die in the state of grave sin, we will suffer the consequence of eternal punishment. Forgiveness of sin and restoration of our communion with God remits the eternal punishment but every sin must be purified either here on earth or after death in the state of Purgatory.
By the Power given to the Church by Jesus of binding and loosening , we can obtain for the dead the mercies of remission of the temporal punishments due to their sins. These are known as indulgences--plenary removes all temporal punishment and partial is just that- partial removal.
These souls are sure that they will be in heaven. However, because of the temporal punishments of their forgiven sins they still need to pay for the damage sin has caused in his relationship with God. We are encouraged to works of devotion, penance and charity for the sinner that no punishment would remain. (CCC 1473).
The souls in purgatory can no longer pray for themselves (they have no bodies). We are to help shorten their stay in purgatory. And how can we obtain for them the plenary indulgences?
Do the work in a state of grace.
Receive sacramental confession within twenty days of the work.
Receive Eucharistic communion (one plenary indulgence may be earned per reception of the Eucharist).
Pray for the Pope's intentions (an Our Father, Hail Mary or other appropriate prayer such as the Creed).
Have no attachment to sin--even venial.
This is great and with all that we do, we learn and apply. These acts are done for the poor souls in purgatory yearning to be with God. They do teach us a beautiful lesson and affirmation, " For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him on the last day.” God wants us to grow in holiness, confront evil and rescue souls.
They in turn will pray for and with us as we struggle here on earth.
Say this prayer daily.
God Bless You