2/11: All Souls Day – Offering Prayers for the Church Suffering in November…

Despite an extensive YouTube search, I have not been able to find the lovely hymn for the souls in Purgatory They are waiting for our petitions…  

I have, therefore, decided to publish the popular first couple of verses and if anyone can find it sung on YouTube please feel free to post it in the comments below.

They are waiting for our petitions silent and calm
Their lips no prayer can utter, no suppliant psalm.
we have made the all too weary with long delay
For the souls in their still agony, good Christian pray.
Requiescant in pace, requiescant in Pace.

For the soul thou holdest dearest let prayers arise
The voice of love is mighty and will pierce the skies.
Waste not in selfish weeping one precious day
But speeding thy love to heaven, good Christian pray.
Requiescant in pace, requiescant in Pace.

Comments invited… especially edifying stories about the souls suffering in Purgatory, prayers, novenas, indulgences, and any hymns which will help us to reflect on the Church Suffering in this Month of the Holy Souls.  

13 responses

  1. Among the many quotations which I regret not having made a note of when I first came across it is one I remember (perhaps wrongly) as ascribed to St. Teresa of Ávila, to the effect that what this great religious reformer had not managed to obtain through the intercession of the Saints in Heaven she had obtained through of prayers of the Holy Souls in Purgatory.

    We should all of us remember that in November we have a mission: to pray for the Holy Souls—in general, for the departed we have known (dear or otherwise), and for those who have no one to pray for them. It is particularly important to pray for those who have gone to their rest ‘unprepared’, as it were.

    But November also has a wider importance. It is a time to reflect on Christian death as that which should inform our lives in every moment, for it is only when we begin taking death seriously that we take life seriously. Unfortunately, we live in an age which has largely removed the mystery of death from its horizon. And where there is belief in an afterlife, it is often the product of the universalist heresy, by which as we fall into life, so we fall into heaven. Nothing could be further from the truth: Christ won us Heaven, and it is by faith in Him that we shall enter there.

    • Prognosticum,

      Your reminder that November gives us the prompt to reflect on Christian death “as that should inform our lives in every moment…” is timely, indeed.

      Since ever I can remember, I’ve known the importance of this, even if I’ve failed to live it out, but I’ve also lost count of the number of times I’ve been chided for it, told to “live” my life without always thinking about death etc

      It never ceases to amaze me how few Catholics seem to consider the four last things important enough to be the focus of our daily lives.

      No reflection (I hope) on my driving, but I pray for protection for myself, my passengers and the other drivers on the road, every time I get behind the wheel – it’s surely worth remembering how fragile is human life and the importance of preparing against an untimely death.

      So, thank you for the reminder – and, of course, our duty to pray for the Holy Souls as we will wish to be prayed for when our time comes.

  2. To obtain a plenary indulgence the “usual conditions” apply but WHAT ARE the “usual conditions”? I’ve asked several people and they all give different answers! Some say a visit to a cemetery is necessary; for others it’s a church; for others it doesn’t matter once the appropriate prayers (WHAT appropriate prayers??) are recited; others that we should mouth the prayers (for the devil’s benefit!); others that we can pray mentally etc., etc!! Can anybody enlighten me as to the CORRECT procedure? Please and thank you.

    • Helen,

      My understanding is that on All Souls Day you can get a plenary indulgence for visiting a Church. The “usual conditions” are to be in a state of grace, Confession within 8 days, reception of Holy Communion and prayers for the Pope’s intentions.

      You can receive a plenary indulgence every day from 1-8 November for visiting a cemetery and mentally praying for the dead, along with the “usual conditions”.

  3. Yes, that sermon was good but I don’t get some of it. I was definitely told, for example, when a dying person receives Extreme Unction, they are returned to a state of innocence and enter straight into heaven. So what happens to all that temporal punishment Father was talking about?

    • I rather think that you have been oversold on Extreme Unction. If a person is incapable of confessing their sins but nevertheless is repentant, then Extreme Unction does in fact wipe away their sins. But…it does not remove the punishment due to those sins UNLESS that soul has also gained a Plenary Indulgence. This MAY be obtained by a Papal blessing if the priest does recite the prayers for the Papal blessing. Plenary Indulgences are not very common but they CAN be obtained.

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