This work has an addition by Father John Morris SJ on the Heroic Act of Charity. BESIDES many who erroneously think there is no such matter as a Purgatory, and, consequently, that it is a vain thing to pray for the dead, there be many who, either for want of sufficient instruction in that which they believe, or by inconsideration of what they believe, do pass over this important business of praying for the dead so coldly, as that they think they do enough to help their own, yea, Christ's own brother, if they do but say-" God rest his soul," which is a most unmerciful manner of proceeding. For if we saw our little brother fall into the fire, we should never be so hard-hearted as to see him broil there, and persuade ourselves it were charity enough to throw a little drop of water into the fire somewhat to assuage his torment. And so I know not how it comes to pass that nlany flatter themselves with the name of good-natured and kind-hearted creatures, who, notwithstanding, take so little to heart this extreme necessity of their brethren that their thoughts are busied about nothing less than relieving them. The intention. therefore, of this present treatise is more at large to stir up in the will of all faithful believers an ardent desire to redress the unspeakable miseries of these distressed souls, that we may "remember those that are in bands, as if we were bound with them." SINCE the time when Father Mumford wrote, the Church has placed her seal of approbation on the devotion advocated by him, in its highest form. Pope Benedict XIII., Pope Pius VI., and our reigning Sovereign Pontiff, Pius IX., have granted magnificent Indulgences to all who perform" the Heroic Act of Charity, or Offering of all works of satisfaction and suffrages in behalf of the souls in Purgatory." The following account of these Indulgences is taken from the authorized translation of the Roman Raccolta, by the Reverend Father Ambrose St. John, of the Birmingham Oratory. This Heroic Act of Charity in behalf of the souls in Purgatory consists in a voluntary offering made in their favour by anyone of the Faithful of all works of satisfaction done by him in this life, as well as of all suffrages which shall be offered for him after his death; by this act he deposits them all into the hands of the Blessed Virgin, that she may distribute them in behalf of those holy souls whom it is her good pleasure to deliver from the pains of Purgatory, at the same time that he declares that by this offering he only foregoes in their behalf the special and personal fruit of each satisfactory work; so that, being a Priest, he is not hindered from applying the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass according to the intention of those who give him alms.
Evelyn Underhill, Paperback, ISBN 10: 150238857X, ISBN 13: 9781502388575