I want to take this occasion to say again that I am truly appreciative of all the words of condolence and assurances of prayer for me and my family upon the death of my mom. It is truly humbling, and one of the great blessings of the priesthood, to have so many people who share their concern for us when we are suffering or in grief. I also greatly appreciate the many prayers that have been offered for my mom’s soul.

In my homily at her funeral, I made a point to mention that we are very hopeful that mom’s time in purgatory will be short because God’s mercy will extend to her sooner rather than later. However, we are under no delusion that mom, upon her death, went straight to heaven. Purgatory is a reality, almost always a necessity, and it is a gift. No one wants to think about suffering these days, we fear it rather than embracing it. But Purgatory should not be feared, it should be hoped for because there is no way but up from there. If we go to purgatory, we will end up in heaven, after the purification of our souls has taken place.

So please, keep praying for mom, and for any other poor souls in purgatory. Also know that if indeed my mom is already in heaven that your prayers will not be wasted, they will be applied for whoever is in most need of God’s mercy.

Peace & Prayers, Fr. Kevin

(Originally published in St. Mary's Bulletin for the First Sunday of Lent, 2019).

More information

Fr. Kevin's mother, Annunciata (Ann) Marie, passed away on Tuesday, February 26th at the age of 88.  He and his family were able to be there when she passed.  The Funeral was held at Sacred Heart Parish in Park, KS on Monday, March 4 @ 11:00 a.m.  Please keep her, Fr. Kevin, and his family in your prayers.

Condolence cards/memorials may be sent to Fr. Kevin at the parish office, 230 E. Cloud Street.  Memorials are to Sacred Heart Church in Park, KS, The Salina Diocesan Vocations Fund, or Sheridan Co. Benefit Walk Fund.

Prayer for the Poor Souls in Purgatory (EWTN.com):

V. Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.

R. And let the perpetual light shine upon them.

And may the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.