Review of “Visions of Purgatory”

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I recently finished the anonymous account of mystical visions on Purgatory that were recorded in the mid-1990s, recently published by Scepter Publishers, under the given title. It is a remarkable work, and if these visions are accurate (why would anyone want to “fake” visions of Purgatory at the cost of spending more time there for lying?) they have much to offer the faithful and the world.

In the book, I didn’t see anything objectionable to the Catholic faith on the issue of Purgatory, rather, this account seems to confirm (at least spiritually) many of the ideas about Purgatory that I always thought compatible with the basics: for example, that it is possible that God allows souls in Purgatory to think about and even visit their friends and relatives to ask for prayers (ie, “ghost appearances”) or the traditional idea that persons in Purgatory can pray for us, though not for themselves (hence, “remember the holy souls in Purgatory”). As one visitor to the mystical writer acclaimed: “As you can see, I am still in Purgatory. I have come to ask you to pray for me. Our Lord has allowed me to take this step. Don’t be sad to see me still here, pray and give thanks to God. Here we are drunk with hope: We burn in the fire of divine love and are drawn to him. It is a great fire, but we are patient and happy” (170).

Some new thoughts on Purgatory are also presented, like many canonized saints have “done time” in Purgatory, and even children before the age of reason have some purification to atone before entering Heaven. In fact, the work stops short of saying everyone on the way to heaven has to pass briefly through it, but on the other hand, people should not be surprised at the need to go there. Everyone is happy and grateful in Purgatory because they are saved, and yet suffer tremendous pains for their sins and so be properly purified. Saints and the Blessed Virgin often visit Purgatory to encourage souls and to “shuttle messages” (interesting!) The “Theological Note” at the end of the book reviews the dogma of Purgatory nicely, and should be read along with the account of the visions.

Hopefully, we will be sufficiently purified before death (it’s still possible!), and we won’t have to go there to confirm all the evidence presented in this book, but it is still very interesting to read and meditate. Blessings!

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