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BY Dan Burke
Praying for the Holy Souls in Purgatory--even referring to them that way, in fact--can seem like a quaint, old-fashioned, pre-Vatican II approach to Catholicism. It can feel like a made up sort of devotion, the kind of thing you tell your kids when they don't know what to do with themselves.
Susan Tassone's new book, Prayers, Promises, and Devotions for the Holy Souls in Purgatory (Our Sunday Visitor, 2012), though, the latest in a long line of books devoted to the topic of praying for the souls in Purgatory, has a feel of a book that's been passed down. That doesn't keep it from being relevant, though, and completely accessible to modern readers.
Tassone has approached the topic in a way that those who feel rather lost by the phrase "souls in Purgatory" will appreciate. She's also assembled prayers and devotions that aren't often seen together.
Throughout the book, Tassone explains the importance of a devotion to the souls in Purgatory and even succeeds in making them real people. She has taken difficult Catholic concepts and used the beauty of existing devotions--from novenas to psalms to ancient prayers--to bring them to life.
Whether you read this book cover-to-cover or find it a dog-eared companion as you struggle to put its suggestions to work, it's a good addition to your Catholic bookshelf.
To catch more about Susan and her book, tune into EWTN's Bookmark program which airs every Sunday, 9:30 AM & 11:30 PM ET; Monday, 5 AM ET; Wednesday, 5:30 PM ET