''Have pity on me, have pity on me, at least you my friends, for the hand of the Lord is heavy upon me.''
This is the touching prayer that the Poor Souls in Purgatory address their friends on earth - begging and imploring their help, in accents of the deepest anguish. Alas, many are deaf to their prayers!
Days and weeks and months pass without their having a Mass said for them, seldom do they pray for them, seldom do they think of them! Whilst they are enjoying the fullness of health and happiness, busy with their work, engrossed with their amusements, the Poor Souls are suffering on their beds of flame. They have no idea of the long years that souls are detained in these awful fires. They cruelly neglect the Poor Souls who are already there and depend entirely on them for help.
It is a prison of fire, in which nearly all souls are plunged after their death, and in which they suffer the most intense pain.
Here is what the great Doctors of the Church tell us of Purgatory. So grievous is their suffering, that one minute in this awful fire, seems like a century.
St. Thomas Aquinas, the Prince of Theologians, says that the fire of Purgatory is equal in intensity to the fire of hell, and that the slightest contact with it, is more dreadful than all the possible sufferings of this earth!
St. Augustine, the greatest of the holy Doctors, teaches that to be purified of their faults, prior to being admitted into Heaven - souls after their death, are subjected to a fire more penetrating, more dreadful than anything we can see, or feel, or conceive in this life.
St. Cyril of Alexandria does not hesitate to say, ''That it would be preferable to suffer all the possible torments of earth until the Judgement Day, than pass one day in Purgatory.''
Another great Saint says, Our fire, in comparison with the fire of Purgatory, is as fresh as a refreshing breeze,''
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