Amazing Stories From Purgatory
I often wonder about what happens after we die. I realize we can read these stories and think, "OK, that makes sense." But I still always wonder -- is that really the way that it is? I guess it's the natural doubter in my that I can't believe things until I actually see them.
As I was reading, I came across the following paragraph, which, in an odd way, related to a conversation I had at lunch yesterday:
You sometimes say to me that the perfecting of a soul is a long process and you are also astonished that after so many prayers, I am so long deprived of the sight of God. Alas, the perfecting of a soul does not take any less time in Purgatory than upon earth. There are a number of souls, but they are very few, who have only a few venial sins to expiate. These do not stay long in Purgatory. A few well-said prayers, a few sacrifices soon deliver them. But when there are souls like mine - and that is nearly all whose lives have been so empty and who paid little or no attention to their salvation - then their whole life has to be begun over again in this place of expiation. The soul has to perfect itself and love and desire Him, whom it did not love sufficiently on earth. This is the reason why the deliverance of some souls is delayed. God has given me a very great grace in allowing me to ask for prayers. I did not deserve it, but without this I would have remained like most of those here, for years and years more.”
We were discussing how great it will be to be older and not have to worry any more about what we eat and drink because we will no longer have to think about seeing our children marry, having grandchildren, etc. We will have experienced it and will have to worry no more! And then we realized -- we will still care. We will always care. It's ingrained in us!
So is our faith life. We trip up -- even fall sometimes. But basically, our faith life is what sustains us.
I loved the story of the woman and her servant in there -- whom she visited in the middle of the night. Have you ever had that experience of someone who has died visiting you? I have -- I often hear my mother and her sisters giggling (or cackling) at certain points. Or I feel my parents' presence many times during very holy times at church.
How many times have we had that experience and maybe even brushed it off, thinking it couldn't be real? I know sometimes I wonder -- it's a great mystery -- if I'm experiencing something or if it's my imagination. Over time, I generally figure it out.
One time as I was in church, at a healing mass for my cousin, who was battling cancer.....I heard his mother. She was there! I shared with him and his brother afterwards and his brother expressed to me that he wished she would visit him. I told him to be aware. She probably already was.
The next time I spoke with him -- she had visited him at his home. He said all he had to do was open his eyes a little more and he saw her. :)
I hope that my friends and family who are in purgatory are able to reach me if they need my assistance. In the meantime, I will gladly go to some extra masses if I think it will help those souls who are struggling to get out!
Feel free to share any stories you have regarding this. I love to read them!