HEN I WAS STILL in college, I remember arguing with a priest about whether those involved in sports should offer prayers “that our team wins.” In my view, praying to win a sports game is trivial; but he disagreed. Leaving that debate aside, we can all agree that praying for the souls in Purgatory is one of the best things we can do. If we pray for these souls, according to Father Irwin, “they have an obligation to pray for us” when they reach Heaven. Saint John Vianney was once overheard—when he was deep in prayer—saying something to the effect of: “I am not ready to go to Heaven; I am happy, O Lord, to live in this world and offer sacrifices for the souls in Purgatory.”
Here’s a beautiful hymn for the souls in Purgatory:
That hymn is #800 in the Brébeuf hymnal. At the bottom of the page, you can learn more about the hymn text (“De Profundis Exclamantes Audi”), which has a really awesome history. By the way, the month of November is dedicated to the Holy Souls in Purgatory.
A Very Small Group: In addition to our large choir which sings at our 11:00am Mass, we have a very small group of singers who take care of the 9:00am Mass. Here’s an example of this small group singing a hymn (number 835 in The Saint Jean de Brébeuf Hymnal) during Mass last Sunday:
I don’t know a more beautiful hymn than that one!