Month of the Holy Souls (Days 26-27)
November 26, 2023
Fr. John Colacino C.PP.S.

Day 26

A reading from the second Letter of Saint Paul to Timothy (2:8-13)

Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of David:
     such is my Gospel, for which I am suffering,
     even to the point of chains, like a criminal.
But the word of God is not chained.
Therefore, I bear with everything for the sake of those who are chosen,
     so that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus,
     together with eternal glory.
This saying is trustworthy:
     If we have died with him
          we shall also live with him;
     if we persevere
          we shall also reign with him.
     But if we deny him
          he will deny us.
     If we are unfaithful
          he remains faithful,
          for he cannot deny himself.

From his Preparation for Judgment by St. John Henry Newman

Well is the hour of death described as the evening. There is something in the evening especially calm and solemn, fitly representing the hour of death. How peculiar, how unlike anything else, is a summer evening, when after the fever and heat of the day, after walking, or after working, after any toil, we cease from it, and for a few minutes enjoy the grateful feeling of rest! Especially is it so in the country, where evening tends to fill us with peace and tranquillity. The decreasing light, the hushing of all sounds, the sweet smell, perhaps, of the woods or the herbs which are all about us, the mere act of resting, and the consciousness that night is coming, all tend to tranquillize us and make us serious. Alas, I know that in persons of irreligious mind it has a very different effect, and while other men are raised to the love of God and Christ and the thought of heaven by the calm evening, they are but led to the thought of evil and deeds of sin. But I am speaking of those who live towards God and train their hearts heavenward, and I say that such persons find in the calm evening but an incitement to greater devotion, greater renunciation of the world. It does but bring before them the coming down of death, and leads them with the Apostle to die daily. Evening is the time for divine visitations. The Lord God visited Adam after he had sinned in the garden, in the cool of the evening. In the evening the patriarch Isaac went out to meditate in the field. In the evening our Lord discovered Himself to the two disciples who went to Emmaus. In the same evening He appeared to the Eleven, breathed on them, gave them the Holy Ghost, and invested them with the power of remitting and retaining sins.

“Nay even in a town the evening is a soothing time. It is soothing to be at the end of the week, having completed the week’s work, with the day of rest before us. It is soothing, even after the day of rest, though labour is in store for us against the morrow, to find ourselves in the evening of the day. It is a feeling that almost all must be able to bear witness to, as something peculiar, as something fitly prefiguring that awful time when our work will be done, and we shall rest from our labours….

Musical Selection (Lucien Deiss)

Keep in mind that Jesus Christ has died for us
and is risen from the dead. He is our saving Lord;
he is joy for all ages.
If we die with the Lord, we shall live with the Lord.
If we endure with the Lord, we shall live with the Lord. 
In him all our sorrow, in him all our joy.
In him hope of glory, in him all our love. 
In him our redemption, in him all our grace.
In him our salvation, in him all our peace. (


Almighty and eternal God,

life of those destined to die

and joy of all the saints,

hear our prayers for your servants;

grant that, freed now from the bonds of death,

they may possess the eternal glory of your kingdom.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,

who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

God for ever and ever. Amen.

Day 27

A reading from the first Letter of Saint John (3:1-2)

See what love the Father has bestowed on us
     that we may be called the children of God.
Yet so we are.
The reason the world does not know us
     is that it did not know him.
Beloved, we are God's children now;
     what we shall be has not yet been revealed.
We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him,
     for we shall see him as he is.

From the Letter to Proba by St. Augustine of Hippo

In the darkness, then, of this world, in which we are pilgrims absent from the Lord as long as “we walk by faith and not by sight,” the Christian soul ought to feel itself desolate, and continue in prayer, and learn to fix the eye of faith on the word of the divine sacred Scriptures, as “on a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day-star arise in our hearts.” For the ineffable source from which this lamp borrows its light is the Light which shineth in darkness, but the darkness comprehendeth it not- the Light, in order to seeing which our hearts must be purified by faith; for “blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God; ” and “we know that when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.” Then after death shall come the true life, and after desolation the true consolation, that life shall deliver our “souls from death “that consolation shall deliver our “eyes from tears,” and, as follows in the psalm, our feet shall be delivered from falling; for there shall be no temptation there. Moreover, if there be no temptation, there will be no prayer; for there we shall not be waiting for promised blessings,: but contemplating the blessings actually bestowed; wherefore he adds, “I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living,” where we shall then be — not in the wilderness of the dead, where we now are: “For ye are dead,” says the apostle, “and your life is hid with Christ in God; when Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory.” For that is the true life on which the rich are exhorted to lay hold by being rich in good works; and in it is the true consolation, for want of which, meanwhile, a widow is “desolate” indeed, even though she has sons and grandchildren, and conducts her household piously, entreating all dear to her to put their hope in God: and in the midst of all this, she says in her prayer, “My soul thirsteth for Thee; my flesh longeth in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;” and this dying life is nothing else than such a land, however numerous our mortal comforts, however pleasant our companions in the pilgrimage, and however great the abundance of our possessions. You know how uncertain all these things are; and even if they were not uncertain, what would they be in comparison with the felicity which is promised in the life to come!

Musical Selection (Fernando Ortega)

One morning
When time is done
Bright heaven
Will be our refuge
The city of God Most High
I long for
That holy day
This longing
Sometimes it captures my heart
And carries me far away
Beyond the sky
Beyond all telling
Our Father Himself will be our light
His arms will hold us
And with his hand
He'll wipe away the tears
That stain our eyes
When darkness
Falls over me
This promise
It's like a fire inside
Burning the dark away




Almighty and eternal God,

Lord of the living and the dead,

your mercy extends to every creature;

hear our prayers for our brothers and sisters,

that, pardoned for all their sins,

they may enter your heavenly courts

and join the endless chorus of your praise.

We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,

who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

God for ever and ever.  Amen.