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The saving words of the Gospel was preached by Jesus Christ to the dead or the spirits in prison, as explained in the First Letter of Saint Peter.November is traditionally remembered as the Month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory, and on Friday, November 2, we observe All Souls’ Day. It is important, however, to pray throughout the year for our dearly departed loved ones so they may achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven. The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification. In reference to a cleansing fire, for example, we read in the First Letter to the Corinthians 3:15, “If someone’s work is burned up, that one will suffer loss; the person will be saved, but only as through fire.”

The practice of praying for the dead is found in Sacred Scripture. Referring to the actions of Judas Maccabeus, we read in the Second Book of Maccabees 12:46, “Thus he made atonement for the dead that they might be absolved from their sin.”

What can we do to help our loved ones in Purgatory attain the beatific vision of God?

Above all, have Masses celebrated for them, especially a set of 30 Gregorian Masses if possible. At the end of every meal, ask God to grant them His mercy. Give alms, perform works of penance, and learn about gaining indulgences as explained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

The practice of Gregorian Masses goes back to Pope Saint Gregory the Great (540 - 604 AD). A deceased monk appeared to Pope Gregory and requested 30 Masses to be celebrated for the release of his soul from purgatory. On completion of the 30 days, the monk appeared once more to Pope Gregory in heavenly glory.

For more information about helping our suffering brothers and sisters in Purgatory, please contact the Missionaries of the Holy Family for a free resource pamphlet. May God bless your family! +JMJ+

"A Family Moment" 2-minute video: Praying for the Souls in Purgatory.

Mass Cards: Request Perpetual Mass Enrollments or Mass Intentions or Gregorian Masses for Loved Ones.

Join: The Purgatorian Archconfraternity.

Recommended Reading: Rosary for the Holy Souls in Purgatory by Susan Tassone

Our Catholic Faith: Catechism of the Catholic Church (Vatican Website)

Our Videos on the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN): YouTube Videos of "Family Moments" on EWTN