"When the devil has failed in making a man fall, he puts forward all his energies to create distrust between the penitent and the confessor, and so by little and little he gains his end at last."

St Philip Neri

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"There is nothing which gives greater security to our actions, or more effectually cuts the snares the devil lays for us, than to follow another person’s will, rather than our own, in doing good."

St Philip Neri

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"God commands not impossibilities, but by commanding he suggests to you to do what you can, to ask for what is beyond your strength; and he helps you, that you may be able."

St Augustine

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 St Catherine of Genoa   (1447 - 1510)

 

TREATISE ON PURGATORY

by St Catherine of Genoa

CONTENTS

 

The divine fire which St. Catherine experienced in herself, made her comprehend the state of souls in purgatory, and that they are contented there although in torment.

1. The state of souls in purgatory. They are exempt from all self-love.
2. The joy of souls in purgatory. The saint illustrates their ever increasing vision of God. The difficulty of speaking about their state.
3. Separation from God is the greatest pain of purgatory. In this, purgatory differs from hell.
4. The difference between the state of the souls in hell and that of those in purgatory.
5. Of the peace and joy which are found in purgatory.
6. A comparison to express with how great violence of love the souls in purgatory desire to enjoy God.
7. Of the marvelous wisdom of God in the creation of purgatory and of hell.
8. Of the necessity of purgatory, and of its terrific character
9. How God and the soul reciprocally regard each other in purgatory. The saint confesses that she has no words to express these things.
10. How God makes use of purgatory to complete the purification of the soul. That she acquires therein a purity so great that if she were yet to remain after her purification she would cease to suffer.
11. The desire of souls in purgatory to be purified from every stain of sin. The wisdom of God in veiling from them their defects.
12. How joy and suffering are united in purgatory.
13. The souls in purgatory are not in a state to merit. How they regard the suffrages offered for them in this world.
14. Of the submission of the souls in purgatory to the will of God.
15. Reproaches of the soul in purgatory to persons in this world.
16. Showing that the sufferings of the souls in purgatory do not prevent their peace and joy.
17. Which concludes with an application of all that has been said concerning the souls in purgatory to what the saint experiences in her own soul.