Special Was Saint Who Taught Powerful Way To Aid Souls Tortured In Purgatory
By Susan Tassone
A rare sight indeed: two Dominican lay brothers, both saints, relaxing together on a Sunday afternoon in Peru -- Lima, to be exact. Two saints produced in this one place!
The elder of the two was St. Martin the "Wonder Worker," the other, St. John Macias. "Two olive trees and two lamp stands before the Lord" (Revelation 11:4). Let us focus on the latter.
St. Macias was born in Spain in 1585, orphaned at the age four, and adopted by an uncle for whom he tended sheep.
His life was a display of wonders, and one day while watching the grazing sheep he was startled by an otherworldly visitor.
"I am John the Evangelist, and I come from Heaven," said the apparition "I am here because God has chosen you for Himself. I am to take you to distant lands. God sent me to you to be your companion."
The Evangelist reputedly continued his visitations throughout Macias' life, and there was other guidance as well. Jesus led Macias to enter the Dominican monastery of La Magdalena, where he was professed as a lay brother and assigned as porter, beginning a life of prayer and penance, serving several Masses a day, and spending his leisure hours motionless before the Eucharistic King.
Our Lady taught St. Macias the sublime mysteries of the Rosary. And it was phenomenal. In one case the saint was raised in ecstasy in the air while praying to the Queen of the Rosary. It was through the most powerful Marian prayer on earth -- the Rosary -- that he would release great numbers of souls in purgatory.
And thus it was that biographers would label Macias the "Helper of the Poor Souls."
Every night he offered three Rosaries for them -- praying on his knees despite draining bodily fatigue.
Souls from purgatory often appeared to St. Macias, begging his powerful intercession.
"We are souls in Purgatory O servant of God, remember us! Help us with your prayers so that we may leave this place of torments," were some of the cries.
There came a mournful chorus, and John saw a number of shadowy figures advancing out of the darkness.
Eyes filled with tears, their arms were outstretched in desperate pleading. "Give us prayers! Oh, Brother John, you are the friend of the poor and sick! Be our friend, too! Help make us worthy to be with God and His blessed ones!"
The lay brother starred in awe: Hundreds of women and children were grouped about the main altar. And every face was marked with loneliness and pain -- their greatest longing that of entering Heaven without further delay.
Brother John recited the Rosary with even greater devotion. He also prayed to the good Lord that many others would think upon and love these suffering souls. This is powerful to remember this Month of the Rosary that leads up to All Souls' Day!
Several times daily, St. Macias also sprinkled Holy Water on the ground, a practice he insisted was a great help to these unseen sufferers.
He also offered hundreds of short aspirations throughout his day. Then there was the highest act of prayer -- the Holy Mass, during which he begged the good God to grant eternal rest to all sufferers.
We can learn and remember great lessons from our Purgatory Saint. The greatest pillars to release souls are Holy Mass, the Holy Rosary, and indulgences attached to these prayers.
When we take the "weapon," as St. Padre Pio called the Rosary, and combine it with Scripture or a Scriptural Rosary, we have a powerhouse of grace so potent that it explodes open the gates of purgatory.
During the months of October and November offer the Holy Mass for every soul who has been in your life. Give the glory and power of the Rosary to every soul in purgatory. Offer all your indulgences for your deceased loved ones, sprinkle Holy Water on all the graves in the local cemetery. Pray the Eternal Rest prayer throughout the day. Teach your children to "offer up" TV for one night. And to offer up their hurts! Pray the St. Gertrude prayer with them.
St. Johnís Maciasí friend, St. John the Evangelist, revealed to him that his prayers had released more than one million souls from their confinement.
On his deathbed, it was said, the heavens opened and those souls rushed down to escort him to Heaven.
Work while it is still day! Make this the best Fall for "souls rescue" ever! Happy is he who lays up for himself the patronage of his brethren in Heaven, for the day of his own departure from earth.
By delivering the souls in purgatory, by hastening their entrances into Heaven, we draw to ourselves the gratitude of all paradise and forge bonds of friendship with all its inhabitants.
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