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All Souls Day teaches about resurrection

Based on Wis 3:1-9; Rom 5:5-11; Jn 6:37-40

This Sunday is the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed or simply All Souls Day. The readings center on death and present Jesus as the source of eternal life for all those who believe in him.

On this day we are asked to remember those who have died and are going through a cleansing that prepares them for heaven. This cleansing is called purgatory. The church calls us to pray for them.

Purgatory is not punishment. It’s about God’s generous mercy because God wants us to spend eternity with him in heaven.

There is no sin in heaven. Purgatory is God cleansing or “purging” us of our sins. Jesus won salvation for us on Calvary, but that doesn’t excuse our personal sins.

Purgatory makes it possible to enjoy the salvation Jesus won for us. 

The Catechism of the Catholic Church tells us: “All who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven” CCC #1030.

All Souls Day teaches us about the Resurrection. The love we have for those who have gone before us does not end when they die. We are called to continue honoring and praying for them.

If you have had a grandpa, grandma, mom, dad, brother, sister, aunt or uncle who died, you know how much it hurts to have someone you love go away. But we have Jesus’ promise: “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live” Jn 11:25.

We will not live on earth forever, but we will live in heaven with God for all time. All of our loved ones who believed in Jesus and died before us will be there, too, and happy to be with us again.

Thank you, Jesus, for your merciful love for us!