Prayers please

There have been no posts for a few days. I have been unable to write or to give priority to this site. A terrible tragedy befell my good friend Tom O’Gorman. Many people in Ireland, and indeed worldwide, will be aware of  his death due to the media coverage surrounding it.

I have known Tom for more than 20 years. He was a very good and loyal friend. He was a genuine human being who touched many people’s lives irrespective of their own faith or opinions or interests. It has been amazing to hear from so many people from so many backgrounds who have spoken about how he helped them or looked out for them in some way.

He heard me talk many times about Fr Willie, and was always interested to find out more.

I normally avoid any personal comments on this site. But these are not normal days. I ask your prayers for the repose of Tom’s soul; for the consolation of his family and of his friends, and for all of those who have been affected in any way by this tragedy.

We will try to return to normal posts tomorrow. I will finish today with this fitting quote from Fr Doyle:

Death is the end of all things here, the end of time, of merit, of pain and mortification, of a hard life. It is the commencement of an eternal life of happiness and joy.

Tom

3 thoughts on “Prayers please

  1. I am sorry to hear of the death of your dear friend. I am praying for the repose of his soul. However, I must comment on Fr. Willy Doyle’s quote. Our Pastor recent gave a sermon on death – it is not necessarily the end of pain and suffering, or the commencement of eternal happiness. If the soul is sent to Purgatory, it most necessarily is experiencing much pain and suffering – though temporarily. If it is deserving of hell, it is experiencing an eternity of pain and suffering. We must not forget to PRAY PRAY PRAY for the Suffering Souls in Purgatory and NEVER assume someone has gone straight to Heaven.

  2. Yes, I do agree with the above comment. Purgatory will await most of us – either for a short time or maybe longer. All Souls do need ardent prayer to remit their time there. This is the famous St Gertrude prayer given her by Our Lord and said to release many Holy Souls each time it is said: ‘Most Heavenly Father, I offer Thee the most Precious Blood of Thy Beloved Son, Jesus, in union with all the Masses being said throughout the world this day for the relief and succour of the Holy Souls in Purgatory.

  3. Molly and Anonymous: Thank you for your comments.

    I actually started to write a long analysis based on the teachings of the Church and the writings of Fr Doyle, but in the end I scrapped it as I considered it inappropriate. I will limit my comment by saying that I would not necessarily disagree with what you have said at all. In fact, the tendency to automatically canonise the dead is very damaging.

    I think you have taken Fr Doyle’s words out of context. Consider the 4 criteria he lists: merit, pain, mortification and a hard life. In particular, anyone with merit in Heaven is, by definition, not going to Hell.

    As for Purgatory, Fr Doyle has written elsewhere about the suffering in Purgatory. But the key point is that those in Purgatory are saved – they are in the waiting room being cleaned up before they enter Heaven.

    St Catherine of Genoa says: “I believe no happiness can be found worthy to be compared with that of a soul in Purgatory except that of the saints in Paradise; and day by day this happiness grows as God flows into these souls, more and more as the hindrance to His entrance is consumed. Sin’s rust is the hindrance, and the fire burns the rust away so that more and more the soul opens itself up to the divine inflowing.”

    Of course, this is just one mystic’s vision of Purgatory. But it makes sense – if the saints on earth suffer with joy, how much more would the souls in Purgatory do so: they know that they WILL reach Heaven. Seen in this light, Purgatory itself is the commencement of an eternal life of happiness and joy, even if there is a temporary suffering.

    Yes, we must pray for the dead, but in no way is that inconsistent with Fr Doyle’s quote.

    I hope this helps.

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