Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Holy Souls Novena, Day 7

Darwin's father was a planetarium lecturer, and often he was cornered after his lectures by hobbyists who fancied themselves misunderstood scientific geniuses. Each had some crackpot explanation for life, the universe, and everything, prefaced invariably with, "And it's so simple!" So simple, and so wrong.

Here's something that's actually so simple and right: "Offer it up," as your mom used to say. All it takes is paying attention to the least thing. When we pick up the huge bucket of Legos poured on the floor, we offer each Lego for a particular person, or for the souls. Get out of bed, which you have to do anyway: offer it for someone. Bend over to put on your shoes: offer it for someone. Turn off the computer: offer it. Breathe: do it for the love of God. You have to do this stuff anyway. Just offer it up, maybe for the holy souls in Purgatory. So little for you, so much for them.

And it's so simple!


(Act of Faith:) My God, I believe in You, because You are Truth itself; I firmly believe the truths revealed to the Church.
(Act of Hope:) My God, I hope in You, because You are infinitely good.
(Act of Love:) My God, I love You with all my heart, and above all things, because You are infinitely perfect; and I love my neighbor as myself, for the love of You.

What food is to a starving man…What drink is to the parched sailor riding the tropic seas on a raft…What light is to the man long blind…What restored health is to the patient invalid…What freedom is to the prisoner…All this and far, far more is release from Purgatory to a holy soul.  And when food…light…health…freedom come suddenly, unexpectedly, the human heart leaps and bounds, and the soul knows the sharp ecstasy of joy.  So it is with each prayer that we say for the beseeching souls in Purgatory.  Our prayer is bread and water and light and health; it is a reprieve and a release and freedom and home-coming.  It is the cutting of bonds, the lessening of weary waiting, the termination of exile, the sudden glorious lift that picks them up and seems almost to shoot them toward the center of their joy, God Himself.  For us that prayer is an almost careless gesture.  For us, a routine act of charity…prayer, an alms, a bit of fasting, a good deed done…forgotten in the doing.  For them, something beyond price and measure.  Christ our Light, multiply our poor efforts as You did the loaves and the fishes as we pray:

Out of the depths I cry to You, O Lord;
Lord, hear my voice!
Let Your ears be attentive
to my voice in supplication:

If You, O Lord, mark iniquities,
Lord, who can stand?
But with You is forgiveness,
that You may be revered.

I trust in the Lord;
my soul trusts in His word.
My soul waits for the Lord
more than sentinels wait for the dawn.

More than sentinels wait for the dawn,
let Israel wait for the Lord.
For with the Lord is kindness,
and with Him is plenteous redemption;
And He will redeem Israel from all their iniquities.

You expired, Jesus, but the source of life gushed forth for souls and the ocean of mercy opened up for the whole world.  O Fount of Life, unfathomable Divine Mercy, envelop the souls in Purgatory and empty Yourself out upon them. Amen.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon them. May their souls, and the souls of all the faithful departed for whom we offer this novena, rest in peace. Amen.

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