“The devotion to the memory of the dead
is one of the most beautiful expressions
of the Catholic spirit.”

(Pope St John XXIXX)

The Catholic Church dedicates the entire month of November to the Holy Souls in Purgatory. During this entire month we pray for the souls of the faithful departed, especially those whom we have known and loved. The souls in purgatory died in the mercy of God, this is why they are called holy; however, because they still had attachment to sin at the time of their death, they must undergo a spiritual purification of their souls before they are able to fully love God with their whole heart, mind, and soul for all eternity.

cemeteryThose in purgatory cannot pray for themselves, this is why they are also called “poor” souls.  They can no longer merit anything for themselves (their opportunity for increasing in merit was during their earthly lives) and they must rely entirely on others to pray and make sacrifices on their behalf. As they are nevertheless part of the Communion of Saints, they depend upon us to help ease their suffering and quickly advance them through their purification so that they can join the saints in heaven.

Prayers for the faithful departed pleases God, who makes use of our prayers to help purify these souls that He loves. It is an act of charity that we can give for those we have known and loved, for our ancestors who gave us life, for those who were our benefactors, for those whose memory is lost, and for those who have no one else to pray for them.

What should we do to help these suffering (and often neglected) souls, especially during the month of November. Firstly we should offer up Holy Communions for the souls in purgatory. It is good to have Masses said for your departed loved ones, especially on the anniversary of his or her death and offer Masses for Holy Souls. We could also obtain indulgences (indulgences reduce or cancel the temporal punishment that we incur through sin). A good practise is praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet for the intention of the Holy Souls and when passing by a cemetery, pray the Eternal Rest prayer.

There are many other ways to help the Holy Souls. Let us then do our best as we begin this special month of prayer.

Do you want a Mass to be offered?

https://i0.wp.com/misasgregorianas.ive.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/62089010_2052195861557845_1682706781425369088_n-2.jpgMasses can be celebrated for deceased members of family or friends, thanksgiving, anniversaries, vocations, for the sick and for any particular need.  If you would like a Mass said please fill in the Mass envelope at the back of Church and give it to a priest or drop it into the Parish Office. You can also contact the Parish Office directly on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 9am to 2pm.

https://i0.wp.com/www.ourladyswarriors.org/images/mass.gifThere is also an old tradition of Gregorian Masses. Gregorian Masses are a series of Holy Masses traditionally offered on 30 consecutive days as soon as possible after a person’s death. They are offered for an individual soul.  The custom of offering Gregorian Masses for a particular soul recognises that few people are immediately ready for heaven after death, and that, through the infinite intercessory power of Christ’s sacrifice, made present in Holy Mass, a soul can be continually perfected in grace and enabled to enter finally into the union with the Most Holy Trinity – our God, Who is Love Itself.

History of Gregorian Masses.
https://i1.wp.com/www.smarymag.org/uploads/images/blog/gregorian.jpgGregorian Masses take their name from Saint Gregory the Great, who was sovereign Pontiff from 590 to 604. St. Gregory the Great contributed to the spread of the pious practice of having these Masses celebrated for the deliverance of the souls from purgatory. In his Dialogues, he tells us that he had Masses on thirty consecutive days offered for the repose of the soul of Justus, a monk who had died in the convent of St. Andrew in Rome. At the end of the thirtieth Mass, the deceased appeared to one of his fellow monks and announced that he had been delivered from the flames of Purgatory.


LAST UPDATE: 11th November 2019

HOLY SOULS Traditionally the month of November is for us a time of prayer for those who died, and now are in the merciful hands of our loving Father. If you wish our community to pray for your deceased loved ones, please put their names in the Holy Souls envelope (find it in the church porch), and return it to the Parish Office. The envelopes will be presented in a special box on the Altar and a series of Holy Souls Masses will be said. All donations attached to the envelopes will be used for Holy Souls Masses during the year. There will be also a special prayer said at the end of each Mass for Holy Souls, as well as a litany to Sacred Heart of Jesus after the Mass on Fridays.

READERS are invited to our Parish evening of Reflection for Readers on Friday 15th November from 7.00pm-9.00pm.

REFLECTION & PRAYER at St Jude’s Shrine Faversham on Saturday 16th November. Talk by Fr Kevin Alban, Prior Provincial of the Carmelites entitled “Prayer in a busy world”. The day starts with Mass at 11.00am followed by the talk concludes 1.00pm.

ST AMBROSE CHURCH WYE, “Israel’s History real or imagined?” A talk by Fr Rodney on Tuesday 3rd December at 11.00 am. All very welcome.

JUSTICE & PEACE group are holding a Fair-trade stall in the church hall after Mass on weekend the 16th/17th November. Fair trade is about better prices, decent working conditions and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers. Please come and buy some goods – coffee, tea, biscuits, chocolate, honey, Christmas cards and gifts. We will also have our annual signing of Christmas cards for Prisoners of Conscience in the hall. Please spare a moment and come and sign.

BARN DANCE Saturday 30th November at St Anselm’s School, Old Dover Road, Canterbury. Dancing to live band ‘Re-Jigged’. Raffle. In aid of HCPT group 87 taking children with special needs to Lourdes for a special Children’s Pilgrimage next Easter Bring your own food and drinks . Tea and coffee provided. £6 (under 14 £3) To reserve a ticket contact: Annie 07866515797 email: anniejudge@hotmail.com

HEAVEN’S ROAD is an online radio broadcasting service featuring prayers, interviews and music to appeal to a Catholic audience – they broadcast over 40 daily live Masses from 15 churches in England and Ireland from their website http://www.heavensroadfm.com. They are seeking a budding radio presenter, so if you would like to get your voice heard, or otherwise if you would like to help in  the background, further information is available here. http://www.heavensroadfm.com/vols.

AID TO THE CHURCH IN NEED will be running their Red Wednesday event on Wednesday 27th November. Please join them in standing up for Faith and Freedom, and in solidarity with those who are suffering religious persecution around the world. Last year churches, cathedrals and other significant sites across the globe (Parliament, the Colosseum and Knock Basilica, to name a few) joined them by lighting up their building in red.  For those that do not have outdoor lighting, you can join in by having red flowers, candles, vestments or balloons that day.