Monday, September 5, 2016

September 5: Anniversary of the Associates and Benefactors of our Order

Today, in the 1962 Dominican Rite Calendar, we commemorate the Anniversary of the Deceased Associates and Benefactors of our Order.  The commemoration is made at Pretiosa as follows:
The Anniversary of the deceased friends and benefactors of our Order. 

Then Psalm 129 is prayed, as it always is on the day of an Anniversary.  Afterwards, the Prayer for an Anniversary is prayed.  The Office of the Dead is also prayed, if not during the day, at least within the same week.

Our duty in charity to alleviate, to the extent that we are able, the suffering of the souls in purgatory, has fallen into such neglect in the post-Concilliar Church.  When was the last time you heard the Holy Father address this grave matter with any force?  In his treatise In symbolum apostolorum, St. Thomas Aquinas reminds us of our duty in charity to work toward the release of these poor souls in Purgatory:
Christ went down into hell to set free those that were his own.  We, too, therefore, should go down there to help our own.  For those who are in purgatory are themselves unable to do anything, and therefore we ought to help them.  Truly he would be a harsh man indeed who failed to come to the aid of a kinsman who lay in prison, here on earth.  How much more harsh, then, the man who will not aid the friend who is in purgatory, for there is no comparison between the pains there and the pains of this world.  Have pity on me, have pity on me, at least you my friends, because the hand of the Lord hath touched me (Job xix, 21).
We help the souls in purgatory chiefly by these three means, by masses, by prayers, and by alms-giving.  Nor is it wonderful that we can do so, for even in this world a friend can make satisfaction for a friend.
O God, Lord of mercies, give to the souls of your servants, whose anniversary we keep, the home of refreshment, the blessedness of peace and the brightness of light.  Through Christ our Lord. .  Amen