Total. Silence.

I was, well, astounded at Mass today.  Fr. R’s homily was fantastic, but that doesn’t astound me (he’s always brilliant.)  It was the reaction to his homily, or parts of it, that astounded me.


Twice during the homily and once later in Mass, Fr. R said these words:


If you were to die right now, where would you go?


The entire congregation went silent.  Even the babies, the toddlers, the young preschoolers.  


Total. Silence.  


It only lasted a few seconds, but all went silent.  It was not a shocked silence or an angry silence.  It was a reflective, reverent silence.  It was a community looking at eternity, altogether, all at once.  It was amazing, astounding, and plain ol’ cool to be with my “Church family” while we all reflected on our lives, briefly examined our consciences and many of us, perhaps, made resolutions to examine ourselves further and take whatever corrective action we might need.  


And, of course, it also made us very mindful of those who’ve gone before us who are suffering purgatory in preparation for complete and total union with God.  We must pray for all who have gone before us.  Every day.  They need our prayers.  They can no longer help themselves and they rely heavily upon us.  We must never forget them.  Today, on All Soul’s Day, the entire Church pauses to remember them in a special way, above our remembrance of them in every Mass, beyond our personal prayers, in community.


During this octave we can earn a plenary indulgence on behalf of the Holy Souls.  Here are the conditions/regulations (found on Father Pat’s page):


All Souls Regulations


An indulgence, applicable only to the Souls in Purgatory, is granted to the faithful, who devoutly visit a cemetery and pray, even if only mentally, for the departed. The indulgence is plenary each day from the first to the eighth of November; on other days of the year it is partial.



A plenary indulgence, applicable only to the Souls in Purgatory, is granted to the faithful, who on the day dedicated to the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed [November 2 {as well as on the Sunday preceding or following, and on All Saints’ Day}] piously visit a church. In visiting the church it is required that one Our Father and the Creed be recited.



To acquire a plenary indulgence it is necessary also to fulfill the following three conditions: sacramental Confession, Eucharistic communion, and prayer for the intention of the Holy Father. The three conditions may be fulfilled several days before or after the performance of the visit; it is, however, fitting that communion be received and the prayer for the intention of the Holy Father be said on the same day as the visit.


The condition of praying for the intention of the Holy Father is fully satisfied by reciting one Our Father and one Hail Mary. A plenary indulgence can be acquired only once in the course of the day.   


Fr. R. also said the greatest unkindness we can do to anyone is to neglect to pray for them after their death.  No matter how holy we consider their lives to have been, it is unkind to not pray for them.  If they don’t need them, someone else does and no prayer is ever wasted.


May the Divine Assistance remain always with us,

And may the souls of the faithful departed,

through the mercy of God

rest in peace.



O Mary, conceived without sin,

Pray for us who have recourse to thee!


About becomewhatyouare

Catholic, Middle-Aged, Knitting-Addicted, Wife, Homeschooler, Mom of 6, Mom-in-Law to 1, Mother of 11 little saints, Grandma to 1, Godmother to 12, Foster Mom to 5, Army mom, Happily living in Texas!
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2 Responses to Total. Silence.

  1. Jennifer says:

    Now you went and did it. I was t-h-i-s close to being totally numb for missing that wonderful parish.

    Try, try again.

    He’s a wonder, isn’t he?

  2. KC says:

    Wasn’t that awesome?!?!?!

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