Tuesday, 5 November 2013
In this month of November, Dominicans have a special patron for the Holy Souls St. Juan (John) Macias, O.P. St John was a Dominican Lay brother and a close friend of St. Martin De Porres and St. Rose of Lima. He devoted his life like St. Martin caring for the poor and suffering who came to the priory door of St. Mary Magdalene in Lima, and to keeping the Virgin Mary company while praying the Rosary many times a day.
Our Lady taught this holy doorkeeper the sublime mysteries of the Rosary. It was through the most powerful Marian prayer on earth, the Rosary, that he would release great numbers of souls from purgatory. The Holy Souls often appeared to St. John begging his powerful intercession, asking him to offer his labours and prayers for their suffrage, "Give us prayers", they cried with one voice. "Oh brother John, you are the friend of the poor and sick! Be our friend too! Help make us worthy to be with God and His Blessed ones." Several times daily, St. Macias also sprinkled Holy Water on the ground, a practice he insisted was a great help to these unseen sufferers.
On his deathbed, St. John confessed to his Dominican brethren that prayers and penances offered for the faithful departed and most especially the Rosary are most pleasing and acceptable to God. St. John the Evangelist whom John Macias had great devotion, revealed to him in a vision that his prayers had liberated more than 1.4 million souls from their confinement. On his deathbed, it was said, the heavens opened and those souls rushed down to escort him to heaven.
May we never forget to pray and remember the Holy Souls in this Month of November as we make our rounds of the beads, for we too one day will be holy souls relying on the mercy of God and the prayers of others.