Do books written by Fr. Schouppe S.J. contain 100% Catholic truth?


#1

I’ve recently purchased two books by Fr. Schouppe S.J. Has anyone read any of his work? They were mainly written about a hundred years ago. The books I have are “Hell and How to Avoid It” and “Purgatory Explained by the Lives and Legends of the Saints.” Are these books error-free sources of 100% Catholic truth?

Here’s the URL to a book titled “How to Avoid Purgatory”, with many other books listed below it about the afterlife.
marianland.com/hell007.html


#2

I used to have his book on Purgatory. In it Purgatory is described as some place on the outskirts of Hell. While I believe in the doctrine of purgatory as taught by the church, I don’t subscribe to Father Schouppe’s view.


#3

First, I would say that a Catholic is obligated to believe in the doctrine of Purgatory. Second, I would say that no Catholic is obliged to believe in the private revelations of saints of the Church. That all said, when so many saints have so many private revelations that corrobate a particular viewpoint, I would hesitate to disbelieve.


#4

I have read Fr. Schouppe’s book on Purgatory. I liked it. I’d say that anything that motivates you to avoid sin is good.

But I have heard people I respect warn that Fr. Schouppe’s books are not 100% reliable. And, since they are full of private revelations, no one is obliged to believe those parts.


#5

Surely, none of his teachings possibly go against the Church, and it wouldn’t be anti-Catholic at all to completly believe what he says, right?


#6

I have it and like it, but can’t read it for long periods.

I can’t vouch for its doctrinal authenticity but I think it is a good book on the subject. I don’t think it is an overly stressed subject.


#7

How funny, I’m about a third of the way into Purgatory Explained by the Lives and Legends of the Saints. As to how much you wish to believe from the private revelations provided in the book, the author clearly states that one is free to disbelieve them without sinning against the faith. From the preface:

The teaching of the doctors and theologians, or rather their opinions on several questions relative to Purgatory, and their explanations of them are not imposed as articles of faith; we are free to reject them without ceasing to be Catholic. Nevertheless, it would be imprudent, and even rash, to reject them, and it is the spirit of the church to follow the opinions commonly held by the doctors.

The revelations of the saints, called particular revelations, do not belong to the deposit of faith confided by Jesus Christ to His Church; they are historical facts, based up human testimony. It is permitted to believe them, and piety finds wholesome food in them. We may, however, disbelieve them without sinning against faith; but they are authenticated, and we cannot reject them without offending against reason; because sound reason demands that all men should give assent to truth when it is sufficiently demonstrated.

Having said that, the book does have a Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur.

For myself, I take the revelations at face value. They paint a picture of Purgatory in as great a detail as Dante did, while stating nothing that is contrary to the faith. The most striking thing for me is the similarities present in the stories. They all place Purgatory in the bowels of the earth. They talk about the fires of Purgatory being the same as the fires of Hell. And, whenever time is mentioned, it’s clear that time in Purgatory passes much more slowly than on Earth.

From chapter 16:

The sick man, having to choose between three days in Purgatory and one year suffering upon earth, did not hesitate, but took the three days in Purgatory. After the lapse of an hour, his angel went to visit him in his sufferings.

On seeing him, the poor patient complained that he had been left so long in those torments. “And yet,” he added, “you promised that I should remain here but three days.”

  "How long," asked the angel, "do you think you have already suffered?"
  
  "At least for several years," he replied, "and I had to suffer but there days."

“Know,” said the angel, “that you have been here only one hour. The intensity of the pain deceives you as to the time; it makes an instant appear a day and an hour years.”

“Alas! then,” said he with a sigh, “I have been very blind and inconsiderate in the choice I have made.”

I am finding this book immensely valuable. Purgatory never seems to be talked about, and when it is, it is sugar-coated–as if the only sufferings we’ll face is the loss of the Beautific Vision. The revelations do indicate that this pain is greater than the pain of the fires, but they also say that the physical pain of the fires is greater than any faced on Earth.

It’s a tragedy that Purgatory is so downplayed and even believed by so few, when it’s clear the vast majority of us is going to spend a lot of time there. The book has helped me to look at my life in a new light. When I think of how every minor transgression is going to be painfully purged from my soul, I tend to think twice before committing even the most venial sins. I highly recommend this book, though it is difficult to find. Tan Books publishes it.

  Peace and God bless!  :)
  
  Eric

P.S. Oh, be sure to check out the Appendix, which discusses how to receive a plenary indulgence. The book talks about a storehouse of treasures set aside for the faithful to use to avoid the cleansings of Purgatory and that it would be the ultimate shame for these treasures to go to waste.


#8

The book is a treasure. REAL CATHOLICS: HAS IMPRIMATUR TO BOOT. Nothing is says is contrary to the New Cathechis of the Catholic Church. I love that famous real Jesuit. Just like Fr. John Hardon, S.J. a REAL JESUIT, not the social workers many are nowadys.


#9

I read his book on Purgatory. Personally I believe that the pains of Purgatory are 100% true. I think that oftentimes today we like to think, “Only the really bad people like Osama Bin Ladin will suffer excruciating pains when they die.” The hard fact is, we all will suffer through Purgatory when we die–and many of us for what will seem like centuries.

I just think that Fr. Schouppe’s work portrays for us the realities of Purgatory which you will never hear about from your parish priest during the homily, or even in your church education classes.

Oftentimes I hear family members speak of a recently deceased member, “He’s in a better place now (meaning heaven).” Although I can understand the therapeutic reasons for that, it’s bad theology. Nearly every one of us will go to Purgatory–and nearly every one of us will spend a substantial time there suffering the temporal punishments we didn’t receive on earth for our sins.

:yup:


#10

OP mentioned the book Hell and How to Avoid it. I think that is two books, one by Schouppe and the second half by Thomas A Nelson of Tan Publishers. I have a copy of that dual book, called Hell and How to Avoid Hell. It does not have an imprimatur. I might guess the original book by Schouppe did.

I read it years ago and don’t remember anything particularly odd about it. Most books by TAN are quite reliable. It might well have the capacity to put someone on the right track who is not on it.


#11

[quote=Madaglan]Oftentimes I hear family members speak of a recently deceased member, “He’s in a better place now (meaning heaven).” Although I can understand the therapeutic reasons for that, it’s bad theology. Nearly every one of us will go to Purgatory–and nearly every one of us will spend a substantial time there suffering the temporal punishments we didn’t receive on earth for our sins.
[/quote]

Amen. It seems that at every funeral I have attended, it is just automatically assumed the deceased is in Heaven, when clearly it is overwhelmingly likely that the soul is in Purgatory instead. The great tragedy at these funerals, is that people, assuming the soul is in Heaven, don’t offer their prayers to help the soul in Purgatory.


#12

So from what I am to understand, it does not go against the Catholic Church or its teachings AT ALL to believe 100% what Fr. Schouppe says in his books and teachings?


#13

[quote=PMV]So from what I am to understand, it does not go against the Catholic Church or its teachings AT ALL to believe 100% what Fr. Schouppe says in his books and teachings?
[/quote]

Absolutely. The very fact that the book has a Nihil Obstat (which means the “materials presented in this work are free of doctrinal or moral errors”) and a Imprimatur (which means “permission to publish this work is hereby granted”) allows us to believe part, most, or all of a particular work.

Eric


#14

[quote=PMV]I’ve recently purchased two books by Fr. Schouppe S.J. Has anyone read any of his work? They were mainly written about a hundred years ago. The books I have are “Hell and How to Avoid It” and “Purgatory Explained by the Lives and Legends of the Saints.” Are these books error-free sources of 100% Catholic truth?

Here’s the URL to a book titled “How to Avoid Purgatory”, with many other books listed below it about the afterlife.
marianland.com/hell007.html
[/quote]

Call it coincidental but I just took* “Purgatory Explained by the Lives and Legends of the Saints”* off my library shelf to reread . I need a spiritual boost from people (saints) who know God is real, that eternal life begins here and now, and that what we do here in this life has consequences for ourselves and others.

Both these books give us insight into spiritual realms. I think they help develop a sense of the seriousness of prayer, penance and a zeal for souls including, of course, our own.

Between New Age and feel good philosophies of today, many neglect the Church Suffering or the fact that one day we, most likely, will join their ranks. Many today think heaven is a shoe-in. Go to a funeral today and you’re given to believe that the deceased has breezed past judgment to dance with the angels at the great party in the sky.

“*Purgatory Explained by the Lives and Legends of the Saints” *gives us pause. It reminds us that while those in heaven may by petition gain for us the removal of some cross, it is left to us in the Church Militant to do battle offering to the Father the Body and Blood of Christ and our union with that one solitary Sacrifice on their behalf.

Joanna


#15

I think it is a special benefit to have these books. They are a real advantage for people who are serious about perfecting their souls and bettering themselves. I have to say the special thing I am thankful for this year is discovering these books that will help me improve myself.

God bless you all.
Happy Thanksgiving.


#16

In the old testament, the Prophets-(Saints) were discouraged by the men in the temple to listen to, or follow them, even to point of stoning and murdering them. No wonder Jesus was not recognized as the Messiah/God.

Today we have writings from Saints-(who are like the prophets of old), and again we are discouraged to listen to or follow their writings. Their writings are good advice for us the faithful.

I read an excerpt from this book just the other day, and it is not coincidence that I would read Fr. Schouppe’s Purgatory, and as so often I just pick up the book and open it up. It landed on a story on Blessed Margaret Mary Alacoque who wasn’t a Saint yet when this book was published. Saint Margaret Mary, if you don’t know, promoted the Sacred Heart, and June is the month that celebrates the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

The story written by Saint Margaret Mary, was of a religious who was from the same order as she, and who came to her from Purgatory. This person from Purgatory told her that the greatest torment that was given to her was that she was shown a relative in hell.

I have heard people say that when one makes it fully into heaven, GOD never allows anything bad in heaven, even the thoughts of relatives in hell who did not make it into heaven. And here we have a story of a Saint who writes the opposite.

These stories from this book have often made me understand a sin that I committed, but I was ignorant of the sin. Like discouraging people from entering the priesthood or holy orders of the church is a sin. Did you know that? I didn’t! I use to do that in the past, but now that I understand it, I always encourage holy orders in a very loving way.

I recommend this book to all souls who wish to understand better, what it takes to get into heaven. I will never discourage the writings of Saints who have been approved by men in the church who are led by our Holy Father the Pope. What is the sense in having approved Saints if we the faithful are discouraged to read and believe that their writings are true. Is it because the church may have made a mistake in approving a Saint? How unfortunate for us if we cannot read the writings of a Saint and fully trust in the content of the writings as an approved way of living. These same writings have been approved by men who are/were led by our Holy Father the Pope, so discouraging to believe in the writings of what the Saints have said, is like discouraging holy orders that most of the writings come from in this book.

In the old testament, Jesus was not recognized as the Messiah/God. In the new testament, I think it is Jesus who will not recognize us when He come back: Timothy 3:2 and Luke 18:8 I say to you, that he will quickly revenge them. But yet the Son of man, when he cometh, shall he find, think you, faith on earth?

GOD bless you


#17

I’m not quite understanding you here because if the person came to St. Margaret Mary from Purgatory, then the person was not yet “fully into Heaven”, so I don’t see how the Saint is writing “the opposite”.


#18

The person came from Purgatory to Blessed Margaret Mary Alacoque, and I rewrote it, because you are right, it was unclear. I hope my rewrite is easier to understand.

Also, it is my understand that Purgatory is Heaven, and the fullness of the understanding of God is given in Purgatory. We do understand fully Who God Is, Was, and Always Will Be if we make it to Purgatory, because it is a spiritual state of being. The world is physical state of being, while purgatory is a spiritual state of being.

GOD bless you


#19

I’m not familiar with the book, and this comment may be redundant, but whatever you believe, understand the difference for acceptable beliefs and theology and what has been formally defined by the Church. I don’t mean that they are mutually exclusive, but in discussion with other Catholics, don’t debate as if Fr. Schouppe’s specifics are dogmatic, and be open to the diversity of orthodox beliefs.


#20

“don’t debate as if Fr. Schouppe’s specifics are dogmatic, and be open to the diversity of orthodox beliefs.”

I don’t think that the question has anything to do with the dogma of the church, and being orthodox.

The book “Purgatory by Fr. Schouppe”, does have the imprimatur, so it must have been examined for error.

Since the question is: “Do books written by Fr. Schouppe S.J. contain 100% Catholic truth?” I would say yes, since it has the imprimatur, and I would say yes, it is a good read. As far Catholic dogma and orthodoxy, I really am not an expert in those areas, and you would expect that whoever gave this book the imprimatur would be an expert in those areas, hence the book has the imprimatur, but this is not an area that I would debate.

GOD gives me through the Holy Spirit what is needed to explain in my journey. I am more journey smart, than book smart. For we walk by faith, and not by sight.

GOD bless you


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