"This is the greatest wisdom -- to seek the kingdom of heaven through contempt of the world. "

Thomas á Kempis

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"To do God's will -- this was the goal upon which the saints constantly fixed their gaze. They were fully persuaded that in this consists the entire perfection of the soul. "

St Alphonsus de Liguori

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"Try to turn your heart from the love of things visible and bring yourself to things invisible. For they who follow their own evil passions stain their consciences and lose the grace of God. "

Thomas á Kempis

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 St Catherine of Genoa   (1447 - 1510)

 

TREATISE ON PURGATORY (cont)

 

by St Catherine of Genoa

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.
 

6. A comparison to express with how great violence of love the souls in purgatory desire to enjoy God.


"Let us suppose that in the whole world there were but one loaf to appease the hunger of every creature, and that the bare sight of it would satisfy them. Now man, when in health, has by nature the instinct for food, but if we can suppose him to abstain from it and neither die nor yet lose health and strength, his hunger would clearly become increasingly urgent.

"In this case, if he knew that nothing but the loaf would satisfy him, and that until he reached it his hunger could not be appeased, he would suffer intolerable pains, which would increase as his distance from the loaf diminished; but if he were sure that he would never see it, his hell would be as complete as that of the damned souls, who, hungering after God, have no hope of ever seeing the bread of life.

"But the souls in purgatory have an assured hope of seeing him and of being entirely satisfied; and therefore they endure all hunger and suffer all pain until that moment when they enter into eternal possession of this bread, which is Jesus Christ, our Lord, our Saviour, and our Love."