“It is a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from their sins" (II Macc. 12:43-46).
November is the month dedicated by the Church to the Holy Souls in Purgatory. Purgatory is a place of temporal punishment for those who have died in the state of grace, but who are not entirely free from venial faults, or who have failed in this life to make full satisfaction for their sin. The souls in Purgatory are also known as the Church Suffering. Our prayers for these souls can help alleviate their sufferings and help them reach heaven more quickly. Although they can no longer pray for themselves, they can and do pray for us. In this Month of the Holy Souls, we should devote some time each day to prayer for the dead. We should also help the souls in Purgatory by having Masses said for them and by engaging in works of charity and/or sacrifice on their behalf.