After earth’s Exile, I hope to go and enjoy You in the Fatherland, but I do not want to lay up merits for heaven. I want to work for Your Love alone with the one purpose of pleasing You, consoling Your Sacred Heart, and saving souls who will love You eternally.In the evening of this life, I shall appear before You with empty hands, for I do not ask You, Lord, to count my works. All our justice is stained in Your eyes. I wish, then, to be clothed in Your own Justice and to receive from Your Love the eternal possession of Yourself. I want no other Throne, no other Crown but You, my Beloved!
I never approved of a schism, nor will I approve of it for all eternity…. That the Roman Church is more honored by God than all others is not to be doubted. St. Peter and St. Paul, forty-six Popes, some hundreds of thousands of martyrs, have laid down their lives in its communion, having overcome Hell and the world; so that the eyes of God rest on the Roman Church with special favor. Though nowadays everything is in a wretched state, it is no ground for separating from the Church. On the contrary, the worse things are going, the more should we hold close to her, for it is not by separating from the Church that we can make her better. We must not separate from God on account of any work of the devil, nor cease to have fellowship with the children of God who are still abiding in the pale of Rome on account of the multitude of the ungodly. There is no sin, no amount of evil, which should be permitted to dissolve the bond of charity or break the bond of unity of the body. For love can do all things, and nothing is difficult to those who are united (Martin Luther to Pope Leo X, January 6, 1519).Truer words were never spoken! How unspeakably sad that Luther finally decided not to send this letter to the Pope. How differently things might have turned out if Luther had sent it, and if the German princes had not gotten involved!
The other day my mother and I had the opportunity to visit one of the cemeteries where some our family’s dead rest. Today, my parents went to the other cemetery to make a visit and offer prayer. These visits made me think. The gives us an opportunity to make an act of devotion which annually begins on November 2nd and is carried through the month of November. Namely, Mass are said, prayers offered for the dead and we make visits to the cemetery to keep alive the names/memory of our deceased family and friends’ in front of God by asking God to be mindful of our loved ones with mercy. Hence, we pray for the dead, for those in purgatory (those who are saved but not yet with God in heaven) with the hope that one day they will see God face to face. You will recall that the only ones in heaven besides the Blessed Trinity and the Theotokos are the saints. Saint Robert Bellarmine said that those in purgatory are close to God and so having knowledge that they are saved, their prayers are effective for us. Hence, we pray for them, they for us.
… while we visit cemeteries, let us remember that there, in
the tombs, only the mortal remains of our loved ones rest, while awaiting the
final resurrection. Their souls — as Scripture says — already “are in
the hand of God” (Wisdom 3:1). Hence, the most appropriate and effective
way to honor them is to pray for them, offering acts of faith, hope and
charity. In union with the Eucharistic sacrifice, we can intercede for their
eternal salvation, and experience the most profound communion while awaiting to
be reunited again, to enjoy forever the love that created us and redeemed us.
… how beautiful and consoling is the communion of saints! It is a
reality that infuses a different dimension to our whole life. We are never
alone! We form part of a spiritual “company” in which profound
solidarity reigns: the good of each one is for the benefit of all and, vice
versa, the common happiness is radiated in each one. It is a mystery that, in a
certain measure, we can already experience in this world, in the family, in
friendship, especially in the spiritual community of the Church. May Mary Most
Holy help us to walk swiftly on the way of sanctity and show herself a Mother
of mercy for the souls of the deceased. (Pope Benedict XVI, Angelus Address, November 2, 2009)