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EPISODE #111
TRENDING WITH TIMMERIE: DEATH, JUDGMENT, HEAVEN, HELL (THE FOUR LAST THINGS)

The four last things.  Do you ever think about your death?  Are you afraid of the coming judgment?  Do you ponder heaven and fear hell?

Fr. Tim Grumbach joins Trending with Timmerie to discuss the four last things.  They’ll pull from the works of St. Alphonsus Liguori & the Catechism of the Catholic Church (paragraph 1005-1041).

 

Listen to more episodes at www.RadioTrending.com

Booking Timmerie to speak in 2020 https://www.radiotrending.com/booktimmerie

 

 

 

Originally broadcast on 1/4/20

EPISODE #155
EMPOWERED BY THE SPIRIT: BEST OF – HEAVEN, HELL & PURGATORY

Host Deacon Steve Greco interviews guests on a variety of topics. On this week’s program, we bring you the second of three-part “best of” series from our program. This show features an interview with our good friend and scholar, Fr. Felix Just.

With reference to the program title, it’s safe to say that this is one of the most requested shows we’ve ever produced.

Listen in.. and may your faith be strengthened!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Originally broadcast on 7/15/18

EPISODE #120
EMPOWERED BY THE SPIRIT: HEAVEN, HELL & PURGATORY

On today’s much anticipated episode, Deacon Steve Greco welcomes Fr. Felix Just back to the studio. Fr. Felix is, among other things, a renowned biblical scholar. We have no doubt that today’s topic is sure to bring about a great deal of discussion.. the teaching of the Catholic Church in regards to heaven, hell and purgatory.

Listen in, and encourage others to do the same!

 

 

 

 

 

Originally broadcast on 11/05/17

HEAVEN AND HELL, EXPLAINED

It’s been hot outside. Some would say it’s been hot as hell. But how do we know hell is hot? And where, exactly, is hell anyway? I was curious what Fr. Felix Just, S.J., Ph.D., and executive director of the Loyola Institute for Spirituality, had to say about the subject so I attended the July 10 Backyard Theology meeting at Santiago de Compostela, along with about 80 other people. The subject of the evening: “Heaven, Hell and Purgatory.” Who doesn’t want to understand more about these three places? And that was my first misconception. Fr. Just says they are not places.

In what was the first of four theology meetings held on Mondays in July, Fr. Just explained the Catholic Church’s teachings on the subject and answered questions from the audience.

Fr. Just shared the various views of heaven and earth ¬– from the Hebrew view of the universe to the Ptolemaic system to Copernicus’s view. Fr. Just said of heaven and hell, “They cannot be places.”

“Heaven is where God is,” he said, noting the Catechism of the Catholic Church’s glossary of terms that describes heaven as: “Eternal life with God; communion of life and love with the Trinity and all the blessed. Heaven is a state of supreme and definitive happiness, the goal of the deepest longings of humanity.”

Hell on the other hand, it should be concluded, is anywhere there is the absence of God. Fr. Just again noted the glossary of terms’ definition of hell. It is: “The state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed, reserved for those who refuse by their own free choice to believe and be converted from sin, even to the end of their lives.”

The word “purgatory,” he added, isn’t mentioned anywhere in the Bible. He did explain it as a period of purification that isn’t bound by the limits of time.

Fr. Just urged attendees to think of heaven and hell less in “location” terminology and more as a state of being, adding: “Our vision of heaven, hell and purgatory is more influenced by Dante and other writers than it is by the Bible.”

My vision of heaven has always been my grandmother’s dining room. It is filled with all those loved ones who have already passed on from this life. There is food. There is laughter. There is love and warmth and contentment.

Among the last of those to ask a question during the evening’s Q&A, I asked: “Will we see our loved ones in heaven?” Fr. Just, who shared that he lost both his parents last year, replied that if heaven is a definitive state of happiness, then our loved ones should be there.

I’m holding on to that.

THREAT OF HELL IS REAL FOR NOT BEING FAITHFUL TO GOD, POPE SAYS

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Death and final judgment before the Lord are not frightening if you live being faithful to God, Pope Francis said.

“It will do us good to think about this: ‘Well, what will that day be like when I am before Jesus? When he will ask me about the talents he gave me, what I did with them,'” the pope said Nov. 22 during morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he lives.

Reflecting on the day’s readings, including the responsorial psalm, the pope looked at the call of God: “Remain faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.”

The Lord will come to judge the earth, Pope Francis said. However, some people don’t recognize that fact, deceiving themselves into thinking the end is nowhere in sight, and how they live on earth has no consequences after death, he said.

“I remember when I was a boy, when I’d go to catechism they taught us four things: death, judgment, hell or glory — that after judgment there’s this possibility” of going to hell or sharing in God’s glory, the pope said.

But the kids were incredulous, he said, telling the priest he was only saying those things to scare them.

The priest, he said, insisted, “No, it’s true! Because if you do not take care of your heart so that the Lord is with you, and you always live far from the Lord, perhaps there is this danger, the danger of continuing to be distanced from the Lord for all of eternity.”

Pope Francis said people have to reflect seriously about the kind of mark they will leave behind after they are gone.

People should think whether they have been receptive to God and whether “the seed” of his word falls in the thorns or on barren, perilous places or on good soil — when the heart is open and lets the seed grow, he said.

Also ask whether the fruit that seed produced was used for the good of all people or kept hidden away for one’s own benefit, the pope suggested.

The Gospel says, “See that you not be deceived” by becoming alienated or estranged from God because of the flash or allure of superficial and worldly things, which includes “the deception of living as if you shall never die,” the pope said.

When standing before the Lord, he asked, will people be ready and waiting or will they be unprepared, surrounded by distractions?

“If each of us is faithful to the Lord, when death comes, we will say ‘Come, Sister Death,’ like St. Francis. It won’t frighten us,” he said.

“When Judgment Day comes we will look at the Lord (and say), ‘Lord I have many sins, but I tried to be faithful.’ And the Lord is good” because he has given everyone this counsel: “Remain faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.”

NEITHER HEAVEN, EARTH, NOR HELL

Purgatory, the idea of a place or process by which the souls of the dead make final atonement for and are purified of their sins, is one of the most closely held tenets of the Roman Catholic faith. Yet the concept can be puzzling. If not the eternal joy of Heaven or the never-ending torment of Hell, what is it? To what Bible verse can we turn to learn about it? For non-Catholic Christians, purgatory is one of the great stumbling blocks in the teachings of the Church.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 1030) teaches that “All who die in God’s grace, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of Heaven.” The Catechism further notes (CCC 1031) that “this final purification of the elect… is entirely different from the punishment of the damned.”

To many Protestants this seems to imply that Christ’s sacrifice on the cross to redeem us from our sins was somehow incomplete. They further object that no explicit mention of purgatory is made in the Bible.

Lawrence Cunningham, professor of theology emeritus, University of Notre Dame, explains that modern society remains deeply influenced by the images portrayed by Durante degli Alighieri, best known as Dante, of purgatory as a place between heaven and hell with compartments where people suffer in various ways.

He notes that the Catholic teaching on purgatory has a long history of development from the early Church through the Reformation to the present. “In many ways, the basic idea of purgatory is based on common sense,” Dr. Cunningham explains. “A person’s sins must be purged before he sees God.”

So unless we repair the damage of our sins by cooperating with God’s grace through the sacraments, by acts of charity and penance, we must make reparation in purgatory; thus being purged. It is a state in which we are offered cleansing before we see the face of God.

The existence and necessity of purgatory can be gleaned from Scripture verses as well. In the Gospels of Matthew (5:26) and Luke (12:59), Jesus condemns sin and speaks of liberation only after expiation. “Amen, I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.” As there is no need to pay “the last penny” in Heaven and there is no hope of liberation from Hell, this reference must apply to a third place. Jesus also indicates in the Gospel of Matthew (12:32) that some sins can be forgiven in the world to come when He says “And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.”

As to the subject of Jesus’ sacrifice and its relation to the subject of purgatory, we cannot lose sight of the fact that His death on the cross makes us worthy to stand before God the Father. However, we have not been abdicated from our own personal responsibility. If we accept Christ’s sacrifice on the cross and confess Him as Lord, yet continue to commit sins, God will judge us accordingly. As Scripture tells us (James 2:26), “For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is also dead.”

So what should we as Catholics see when we look at the possibility of purgatory? Do we see a punishment to be feared or a saving grace to be welcomed?

Fr. Damien Giap, chaplain at JSerra High School in San Juan Capistrano, explains. “At the moment of death, the soul is separated from the body,” Father Damien says. “The soul is immortal and never ceases to exist. Immediately upon death, the soul of each person is judged by God, either to eternal life or the damnation of Hell. For those damned to Hell, such a soul immediately experiences Hell thereafter. For a soul judged to Heaven, then it may immediately experience the fullness of Heaven. We call such souls the saints.

“For those who are judged to eternal life yet still have some attachment to sin or there is some temporal punishment due for sin, such a soul experiences purgatory in the manner that God determines,” he adds. “This is a grace to be welcomed. Purgatory is really a blessing, for not only does the soul know that it is destined for Heaven, but purgatory purges anything from the soul which would limit the vision and enjoyment of God in Heaven.”