By Abuchi Onwumelu
The Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, His Lordship Most Rev. Paulinus Ezeokafor, has charged the faithful to constantly pray for the souls in purgatory. The Bishop made this exhortation at the commemoration of All Souls Day, Saturday, November 2, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cathedral, Awka, reports Abuchi Onwumelu.
Bishop Ezeokafor who also charged the faithful to lead Christ-like lives, said it would stand them in good stead to gain eternity; even as he reminded Christians of the inevitability of death.
All Souls Day is observed every November 2 in the Catholic Church in commemoration of all the faithful departed – those baptized Christians who are believed to be in purgatory because they died with the guilt of lesser sins on their souls.
In Roman Catholic Doctrine, Requiem Masses are commonly held, and many people visit and sometimes decorate the graves of loved ones to mark the day.
In his homily to mark all souls day, Bishop Ezeokafor said the Mass was to remember those in purgatory through intercession of prayers and preparing those on earth on the various commandments of God and for them to shun material things of the world that could cost them eternal life.
The Catholic Prelate noted that most Christians acknowledged that all would account for their stewardship on earth, pointing out that it clearly identified the existence of hell and heaven which demanded that all should be encouraged in all their good deeds.
The commemoration featured prayers of the faithful on earth to help cleanse the souls of the departed to into fit their vision of God in heaven.
The Concelebrated Holy Mass which was presided over by Bishop Ezeokafor, took place at the Priests’ Graveyard located inside St. Patrick’s Catholic Cathedral, Awka. It witnessed the heavy presence of the clergy, government functionaries and parishioners, among others.