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This is still done, apparently. I thought it had been done away with centuries ago, along with paying for "Indulgences". But no, my father in Law needed to be taken to church today, to arrange for the priest to dedicate a mass to my mother in law, who died a couple of years ago. He pays the priest to do this. She's in purgatory (whatever that is - it's not clear) and paying for a mass and praying for her might get her out quicker.

Okay...
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Every trace of attachment to evil must be eliminated, every imperfection of the soul corrected. Purification must be complete, and indeed this is precisely what is meant by the Church's teaching on purgatory. The term does not indicate a place, but a condition of existence.

--Pope John Paul II

http://w2.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/audiences/1999/...

Not sure this is in line with current papal thought (since it is mostly a Catholic doctrine, afterall). While JPII does say that you can "offer up prayers and good works on behalf of our brothers and sisters in Purgatory" he does not indicate that these will result in 'getting them out quicker.' He, instead, describes it as a condition of purification.

Pete
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“While JPII does say that you can "offer up prayers and good works on behalf of our brothers and sisters in Purgatory" he does not indicate that these will result in 'getting them out quicker.' He, instead, describes it as a condition of purification.”

So are the prayers necessary (a condition that must be met) for the person to be purified enough to leave purgatory?
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While JPII does say that you can "offer up prayers and good works on behalf of our brothers and sisters in Purgatory" he does not indicate that these will result in 'getting them out quicker.'

I found this:

https://www.ourcatholicprayers.com/prayers-for-souls-in-purg...

"Many of the Fathers of the Church, such as St. Augustine and St. John Chrysostom, considered prayers for souls in purgatory to be essential."

"However, our prayers for these souls can help alleviate their sufferings and help them reach heaven more quickly."

Might not be the official doctrine, but it is a popular notion: pray for them to get them out quicker.

I still don't see why this praying for them is necessary or helpful. How does it work?
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I still don't see why this praying for them is necessary or helpful. How does it work?




Do they get out faster than if nobody is praying for them?
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Might not be the official doctrine, but it is a popular notion: pray for them to get them out quicker.

I think you're on to something with the "popular notion" idea and why PJII did not describe this specifically as what happens with prayer.

The question would also be how many prayers by how many persons for how many years, eons, and epochs you have to get out of Purgatory? It's quite thorny navigating all of the possibilities that such a doctrine has to consider, but over the centuries has provided theologians and parishioners alike with much fodder. And, of course, in the end it all doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

Pete
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Do they get out faster than if nobody is praying for them?

According to the linked article, yes:

"However, our prayers for these souls can help alleviate their sufferings and help them reach heaven more quickly."

Presumably, more quickly than if nobody is praying for them.

What happens if nobody is praying for them? I'm thinking of the scene in the movie Coco where the dead guy starts to fade away because no one living remembers him...sounds facetious, but is it? I expect the Land of the Dead belief is a combination of purgatory and some other, ancient traditional belief.
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I do not know the doctrine, and do not think money buys anything from God and should not from the church. This passage however, is how I envision purgatory, the word used here is Hades.


Luke 16:
The Rich Man and Lazarus
19 “There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. 20 At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores 21 and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.

22 “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. 24 So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’

25 “But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’

27 “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my family, 28 for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’

29 “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’

30 “‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’

31 “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”


This is the other passage that comes to mind:
1 Corinthians 3:15 If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames.
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"This is still done, apparently."

Income to the Catholic church... In my mind the leaders of this church do not reflect Jesus. He lived simply while they live in luxury and make up their own rules.

There is only one Savior and we can't buy our way in nor can we save anyone else. Jesus is the only way, as He said in John 14:6, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Light. No man comes to the Father except through me." This one of the two passages that brought me to Him at the age of 59...

If you're curious the second passage is, Matthew 10:33 Revised Standard Version (RSV)

"but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven."


That's the way I see it.
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In my mind the leaders of this church do not reflect Jesus. He lived simply while they live in luxury and make up their own rules.



But you think Trump is a Christian?
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But you think Trump is a Christian?

Well, he says he is, so he is.

That's the test, isn't it?
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21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’

23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’
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That's the test, isn't it?

And they've got the money to prove it.

https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/net-worth-richest-p...

Pete
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Matthew 25
There is a parable of the sheep and the goats.... As I treat the least of the brethren of Jesus I also treat him.

I do give to the church but would not think I could buy any blessing from anyone. I would not want anyone to bless me that could be bought in that way.
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<<
Well, he says he is, so he is.
><
That's the test, isn't it?
>>

No, never has been......

Jesus knows those who are His.
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No, never has been......

Jesus knows those who are His.


Who decides what Jesus knows? There are an awful lot of folks out there who are convinced they have that knowledge. This includes most, if not all, of the wealthy televangelists who are able to extract money from the poor in order to give it to the rich (themselves, of course).

Pete
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Who decides what Jesus knows?

Ultimately, that would be Jesus. The NT says that there are those who claim to be one of His, but are either deceiving themselves, or trying to deceive others.

If a senator calls himself a Democrat, but always votes with the Republicans, is he really a Democrat? A person is free to self-identify as a pizza, but that doesn't make it so.
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Who decides what Jesus knows? There are an awful lot of folks out there who are convinced they have that knowledge. This includes most, if not all, of the wealthy televangelists who are able to extract money from the poor in order to give it to the rich (themselves, of course).

Pete
>>

Jesus does. He ain't dead. He was killed but He rose from the dead, I thought you may have known that.

Jesus knows what the wealthy televangelists are doing.... He knows what great edifices have been built to 'honor' Him. I believe he is honored by those like Mother Teresa and others who care for the the least of the brothers and sisters of Christ.

Jesus is the head of the church and those who are his hear his voice regardless of the source, it could come from the pulpit, or from a stranger on the street. I try to always be listening for the Truth and to discern the lie. I do not try to determine if someone else is a Christian, nor if they are going to heaven... that is not in my job description, I have been told to speak the truth in love. I have been told to serve others, to love others and in so doing fulfill the law of Christ.

I know there is much evil in the world, but I am trying to focus on what is good, what is noble, what is praiseworthy, to think about such things.
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21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

And what is the will of the Father? Did He tell us already in the same sermon?

17“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 19Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.

And then He goes on to tighten up the Law and make it even more difficult to follow.

Where Jesus says "Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands..." is He talking about the commands of the Law, or the commands He is giving, which seems to include the Law?
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Where Jesus says "Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands..." is He talking about the commands of the Law, or the commands He is giving, which seems to include the Law?

Jesus criticized the religious leaders for focusing on minutia, and missing the larger intent of the Law. They also had interpreted the Law in such a way that they made exceptions that Jesus said were not valid.

So here "commands of the Law" seem to mean the OT law as properly interpreted and applied
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So here "commands of the Law" seem to mean the OT law as properly interpreted and applied.

Sure. And Jesus fulfilled the Law, yes? It does not apply to Christians.

https://www.gotquestions.org/Christian-law.html

Question: "Do Christians have to obey the Old Testament law?"

Answer: The key to understanding the relationship between the Christian and the Law is knowing that the Old Testament law was given to the nation of Israel, not to Christians...None of the Old Testament law is binding on Christians today...The Old Testament law was never intended by God to be the universal law for all people for all of time. We are to love God and love our neighbors. If we obey those two commands faithfully, we will be upholding all that God requires of us.
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Some law was given that was not specific to the nation of Israel in the Old Testament though. That is what the Jerusalem Council in the book of Acts picked out. Those Old Testament requirements that are not part of the Law of the National of Israel.

Christians are not to eat blood. Yes, that stricture was from the Old Testament, but it was given to Noah after the flood and was to be for all people who ate meat. It was not a specifically Jewish or Israeli law.

Sexual sins are in violation of how God created man and woman and joined them in marriage. That is something that is for all people and not just the nation of Israel.


c
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Sexual sins are in violation of how God created man and woman and joined them in marriage. That is something that is for all people and not just the nation of Israel.

Which sexual "sins"? Is there a definitive list?

So you don't agree with the Got Questions answer: "We are to love God and love our neighbors. If we obey those two commands faithfully, we will be upholding all that God requires of us"?
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And then He goes on to tighten up the Law and make it even more difficult to follow.
>>
I have always found this the most difficult command.
"Love one another as I have loved you!"

I have also found that if I change on the inside so that I love God, and love my neighbor as myself, love my brothers and sisters in Christ as He has loved me the other commands begin to merge in to the flow of my life.

If I walk in the light as He is in the light the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses me from all sin. I have found that I do not walk in the light when I do not love, maybe there is a connection.
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So here "commands of the Law" seem to mean the OT law as properly interpreted and applied
>>

You and others have created a loop hole that you can drive the sins of the world through.

I will not change a dot nor a tittle of the law. Nor do I strive to keep the minutiae of the law, i strive to love God, love my neighbor and love those who are His.... that is only possible for me when I cleanse my heart by the blood of Jesus Christ. I do not know what others do some may have a better heart than me, I have often found mine to be hard as a rock, and very dirty.
I believe one of the OT prophets or psalmists cried out, "Create in me a clean heart oh God."
I have found my heart to be deceitful and willing to compromise anything to get what it wants. I have found that the only way to change it is to only desire what is good, what is noble, what is true. If I want something else my heart will seek a loophole in any law!
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If we obey those two commands faithfully, we will be upholding all that God requires of us.


If you do live those 2 commands faithfully you will fulfill the law of Moses.

Galatians 6:2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

Jesus gave us a new command. "Love one another as I have loved you."

Romans 13:8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.

John 13:34-35
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

Sometimes I think the world does not recognize Christians because we do not love one another. If we do not love what are we? It matters not what else we do, what great things we accomplish, we will not see our brother in need or we will not care because we are busy doing great things. If I turn away from a brother in need I should turn away and weep and Peter did when he denied our Lord.
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So you don't agree with the Got Questions answer: "We are to love God and love our neighbors. If we obey those two commands faithfully, we will be upholding all that God requires of us"?
>>

That may be all that God requires from you.... HE requires more from me. To him who much is given, much is required. I am required to use what HE has put into my stewardship to honor HIM, including my life.
When I became a disciple of Jesus Christ, I gave up all that I had, all that I was and took up my cross to follow Him. I have laid that cross down from time to time and picked up other things that seemed important at the time. Then I remember the cross of Christ and look for mine, often I have to discard parts of my life in order to lift that cross and follow the Way, the Truth and somehow to attain the Life.
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"""We are to love God and love our neighbors. If we obey those two commands faithfully, we will be upholding all that God requires of us"? ""


We are told that those two commands are the underlying basis of the 10 Commandments. So, of course I accept that if we actually do those two things, that we are upholding most of what God requires of us as Christians. There are certain other direct revelations such as were reiterated in the Council of Jerusalem that are requirements for Christians as well.

The trouble comes in how we actually do this.

How do you love God? We love God by putting him first over everything and everyone else and by hating sin. You can't love a God who is holy if you don't hate sin. Those are just two of the many sides of God.



How do you love other people while keeping love for God at the forefront? Caring for individuals. Sharing with individuals. Hospitality for individuals. One of the hardest parts is to call our hated sins in a non-judmental manner. That is why it is one of the places Jesus advises his followers to take a friend along.


c
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