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What about Limbo?[edit] (talk) 22:36, 9 September 2008 (UTC)

See Limbo. Lima (talk) 19:05, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Pain and fire[edit]

Sorry, Precor, but I must say the following comment, which you are insisting on inserting under the heading "Pain and fire", seems to belong in a more generic part of the article. In any case it cannot be admitted to Wikipedia unless it is attributed to a reliable source and not put in as a personal editorial comment.

There have been many theological concepts of purgatory over the centuries of Christianity. May scriptural interpretations point to the existence of the purgatory concept but scripture, as with many aspects of its interpretation, does not describe it in any detail and thus the theological beliefs pertaining to this theological concept is wide of breath. What is common among almost all interpretations related to Purgatory is that it is a spiritual place, or state, where the soul is purified of any remaining venal (or small) sins that accumulated before death but was not remitted to Christ for forgiveness before the end of one's life. Lima (talk) 05:48, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

Changes by[edit]

I have no objection in principle to capitalizing "Hell", "Heaven", "Purgatory"; but I believe that a systematic overthrow by a single editor of the established usage in an article is illegitimate. Such a systematic change should be effected only after ensuring on the Talk page that there is support for it.

I have also restored the picture that was at the start of the article. The IP editor's replacement of it with one that reflects the popular image of a fiery purgatory would make the reader think that this is an essential part of the idea of purgatory. I have moved that editor's fiery image to the section on "Fire and pain", although I think it would be better to omit it completely. The original picture shows that people do have several different images, not just one, of what purgatory is.

The Eastern Orthodox Church does consider itself to be one Church, even if composed of several "local" Churches, just as the (Roman) Catholic Church sees itself as one Church, even if composed of several particular Churches. There are no grounds for changing one of these to the plural, while continuing to refer to the other in the singular. Lima (talk) 07:02, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Sources needed for Purgatory in early Christianity[edit]

I quote from the top of this article: "Purgatory is the condition or process of purification in which the souls of those who die in a state of grace are made ready for Heaven. This is an idea that has ancient roots and is well-attested in early Christian literature, while the conception of purgatory as a geographically situated place is largely the creation of medieval Christian piety and imagination" This is a direct quote from the Enc. Brit. Again, there is no source showing the idea of Purgatory to have ancient roots and being well attested in early Christian literature. Some quotes from this early Christian literature are needed or any reference to Purgatory in early Christianity should be deleted.

Poldebol (talk) 04:08, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

If it is a copyvio from EB it should be removed for that reason, or rewritten. But if it is from, or in, EB it is not unsourced, is it? Johnbod (talk) 04:33, 29 November 2009 (UTC)

Do you feel it must be removed, yes or no? If it is well attested, it should be no problem to quote a text from the Early Christian literature.

Poldebol (talk) 13:28, 30 November 2009 (UTC)

Any problems with the origin of the word Purgatory?[edit]

If anyone has a problem with the additions, please say so in a civil fashion. The references are accurate, and hyperlinks to the texts have been provided.

Johncab593 (talk) 04:10, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

The problem was explained in my edit summary when I first removed them. The translations of the word are a non-sequiter because that is not where the Catholic Church derives the teaching of purgatory. In fact, of all the verses I've ever heard ANYONE try to use to support purgatory, not one of them used the word Sheol, Hades, Gehenna. So the validity of purgatory does not, as your edit summarizes, depend on what sort of translation one accepts. Hence it is a complete non-sequiter and pointless to include. In fact, I would consider it borderline pov pushing because it attempts to make a conclusion for the reader based on things that are actually unrelated to the concept of purgatory. What you are doing is making an argument against the existence of purgatory based entirely on the history of the WORD purgatory, but concepts often, if not ALWAYS exist before a term to define them does, yet you're trying to falsify purgatory based on the origin of the word. Certainly you don't believe dinosaurs didn't exist until someone invented that word too, do you? The article is about the concept of purgatory, not the word purgatory itself. Hence, and I know I'm sounding a bit repetitive here, your edit has no purpose in the article. I don't even have to look at the sources to know that.Farsight001 (talk) 08:25, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

The references are accurate, and I've added two more by a Catholic authors. I am sorry you feel I was making a conclusion against Purgatory; I have tried to reword the language you seem to object to. I felt the numerous translations that preserve the distinction and the relatively few that avoid distinction actually imply quite the opposite.

As to the purpose, it is, in fact, the origin of the word Purgatory. By stating the key references I found useful, I hope to save the next person who does an in-depth study, pulling from the original Greek, some time. Johncab593 (talk) 19:56, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

All that need be said of the origin of the English word "purgatory" (the noun) is: "The word "purgatory" is derived, through Anglo-Norman and Old French, from the Latin word ''purgatorium''.<ref>"Purgatory," Oxford English Dictionary</ref> There is no need for more. On the origin of the Latin word "purgatorium" more can be said. But the idea that the Latin word was used in the twelfth century to translate New Testament ᾅδης (Hades) is both unsourced and nonsense, and all the talk about how various Bibles in various languages translated ᾅδης and γέεννα (Gehenna) is irrelevant, since they translated neither word as "purgatory". Esoglou (talk) 20:02, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

I'll respect the opinon of two people, and remove the translation references until I get a 12th century Latin translation in my hands. Johncab593 (talk) 20:08, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

The section does read very oddly at present, as though as many versions of the Latin Bible existed as of the bible in English, which is certainly not the case. There is no link to Vulgate that I can see; AFAIK this text was hardly ever altered. It is all easily available online btw - here and in many other places. Johnbod (talk) 20:18, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Johncab, you completely missed what I was trying to say. Please read what I typed above again. Personally, I was actually pleasently surprised about the sources you used. Normally someone trying to present information the way you are is using places like jesus-is-savior or The sources are not my problem. The problem is that the whole point of your addition is irrelevant. You're going on and on about the origins of the word purgatory and talking about how the existence of the concept depends on the origins of the word and how one accepts certain translations, but NO ONE derives the existence of purgatory from that stuff. Hence, your addition is simply irrelevant. It would be kind of like me adding a new section on the origins of the pope hat in the article on bishops. There's just no point to it.Farsight001 (talk) 20:42, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

Johnbod - I was actually looking for one translated in the time period; and all the bible hyperlinnks were removed (by me) after Esoglou's post. I have seen two authors reference the appearance of the word Purgatorium in a translation of the bible in the 12th century, which spurred its rapid appearance in multiple languages. I did assume, incorrectly as it turns out, that this became a common translation. While I seriously doubt that would appear in an internet version, I'll give it a look. Thanks for the link though, every bit helps! :D

Per Esoglou's comments in the history section, when I find the exact text I'm looking for, I'll post it in the "History of Purgatory" article.

Farsight - I actually got your point, and your criticism was helpful. I am in favor of the concept of purgatory, and overcoming the objection "Purgatory isn't mentioned in the bible" is actually where I was going with the text. I obviously failed in conveying that. :D Johncab593 (talk) 13:08, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

It might appear in a gloss or commentary, but tinkering with the actual Latin Vulgate text was strongly discouraged for obvious reasons, and AFAIK changes between the 4th century & at least the 16th were minimal, & mostly due to copyists' errors in manuscripts. There were some revisions in the light of the linguistic and textual research of Renaissance Humanism & the 1592 "Clementine" printed edition was then standard until 1979, when a new revision was published. Johnbod (talk) 14:06, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

Lutheran section[edit]

Does anyone mind expanding the Lutheran section of this article? Mainly, it only speaks of "praying for the dead", not on how Luther felt about purgatory as a process of purification... Shark96z (talk · contribs) 20:12, 10 February 2010 (UTC)

Agreed. "Praying for the dead", although does have to do with purgatory, seems to lean more towards veneration of saints or intercession of saints. I think it would be good to add what Lutheran churches believe. I know some, like the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, reject purgatory and others, like the Anglo-Lutheran Catholic Church accept the doctrine. --Willthacheerleader18 (talk) 23:33, 22 September 2010 (UTC)

Sentence confused?[edit]

The sentence:

And God being a just God would not condemn to hell a person who although not having satisfied restitution for a sin or sins, and therefore not currently ready for the rewards of heaven, the sufferings of hell.

doesn't quite make sense. I think someone got a little tangled in the syntax; possibly, they were considering two ways of expressing the thought and mixed them together--or maybe they just omitted a phrase. (talk) 19:32, 24 September 2010 (UTC)Stephen Kosciesza

Thanks for drawing attention to it. Esoglou (talk) 20:09, 24 September 2010 (UTC)

Maybe these two Luther's quotes might be helpful for your purpose. Keep in mind that they come from Luther's writings of lesser accuracy (he did not write them by his own hand and it is doubtful whether he had any role in editing them). Yet, it is of great probability that the quotes in question reflect Luther's original ideas. In the first quote, Luther plainly denies the idea of Purgatory, finding it in contradiction with his own doctrine of the righteousness by faith alone: "Augustine, Ambrose, and Jerome held nothing at all of purgatory. Gregory, being in the nighttime deceived by a vision, taught something of purgatory, whereas God openly commanded that we should search out and inquire nothing of spirits, but of Moses and the prophets. Therefore, we must not admit Gregory's opininon on this point; the day of the Lord will show and declare the same, when it will be revealed by fire. This sentence, "And their works do follow them, must not be understood of purgatory, but of the doctrine of good works or of godly and ture Christians, and of heretics. Arius, the heretic, had his judgment; the fire of faith has declared it. For the las day will discover and declare all things. God has, in his Word, laid before us two ways; one which by faith leads to salvation, - the other, by unbelief, to damnation. As for purgatory, no place in Scripture makes mention thereof, neither must we any way allow it; for it darkens and undervalues the grace, benefits, and merits of our blessed, sweet Saviour Christ Jesus. The bounds of purgatory extend not beyond this world; for here in this life the upright, good, and godly Christians are well and soundly scourged and purged." Martin Luther, Table Talk, #DXV. Quoted in Kerr, Hugh Thomson Jr, "A Compend of Luther's Theology", Princeton, NJ: Westminster Press, 1943., p. 243.

However, the second quote apparently leaves some very restricted room for the intercessory prayer for the dead:

"Shall we pray for the dead? ... We have no command from God to pray for the dead; therefore, no one sins by not praying for them; for what God does not bid or forbid to do, in that no one can sin. Yet, on the other hand, since God has not permitted us to know, how it is with the souls of the departed and we must continue uninformed, as to how he deals with them, we will not and cannot restrain them, nor count it as sin, if they pray for the dead. For we are ever certain from the Gospel, that many have been raised from the dead, who, we must confess, did not receive, nor did they have their final sentence; and likewise we are not assured of any other, that he has his final sentence. Now since it is uncertain and no one knows, whether final judgment has been passed upon these souls, it is not sin if you pray for them; but in this way, that you let it rest in uncertainty and speak thus: Dear God, if the departed souls can be in a state that they may yet be helped, then I pray that thou wouldst be gracious. And when you have thus prayed once or twice, then let it be sufficient and commend them unto God." Gospel Sermon, First Sunday After Trinity. Quoted in Kerr, Hugh Thomson Jr, "A Compend of Luther's Theology", Princeton, NJ: Westminster Press, 1943., pp. 243-244. Željko Porobija, Croatia. (talk) 21:07, 5 January 2012 (UTC)


Specific to the American church, the Thirty-Nine Articles are not an official statement of Anglican belief and have been relegated to an appendix of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. A "soft view" of purgatory can be found in Hymn 357 of the '82 Hymnal. It should be remembered that Anglicans have continued to pray for the dead, whereas most Protestant denominations do not. So while indulgences have been rejected along with specific statements about the nature of purgatory, the idea persists in Anglicanism. (talk) 21:52, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

Source needed for Purgatory in Scripture[edit]

Under the 'Sin' section it reads: "This teaching is based on both Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition."

There needs to be a reference to where in Scripture this is found, and probably that only Catholics believe that their interpretation of Matthew 12:32 and 1 Cor. 3:11-15 is where it is found. Protestants have a much different interpretation of these verses which do not support the idea of purgatory. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Dockstand (talkcontribs) 15:38, 1 December 2010 (UTC)

"This teaching" is about sin, not purgatory. Esoglou (talk) 16:02, 1 December 2010 (UTC)
Oh. my bad. I re-read it a bit more slowly and think its fine the way its written. Thanks...Dockstand (talk) 19:08, 1 December 2010 (UTC)

Does the article address whether only Catholics are given the "opportunity" of Purgatory?[edit]

Does the article address whether only Catholics are give the "opportunity" in Purgatory? What about Protestants. I read through and may have missed this topic. The classic statement: "Apart from the Catholic Church there is no salvation" would have to have been revised somehow to allow baptized Protestants (leave off for now those of other religions) the "opportunity" (not scare quotes) of correcting their outlook and lives. If the article doesn't approach this subject, I think it should.JWorkman 16:49, 14 March 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by James K. Workman (talkcontribs)

Why does this indicate unsigned when I used the four tildes and my name printed at the end of the article? JWorkman 17:14, 14 March 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by James K. Workman (talkcontribs)

It is not Catholic teaching that nobody but Catholics are saved from hell but may have to be purified before entering heaven. Esoglou (talk) 19:12, 14 March 2013 (UTC)
Thank you. Would you make that into a positive statement? What does the Catholic Church teach positively about Protestants in Purgatory? And then I want to ask if that positive teaching is in the article. JWorkman 19:38, 14 March 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by James K. Workman (talkcontribs)

Vatican II, through the direction of the Cardinals, changed the way Catholics should think about Protestants. Vatican II (Oct., 1962 - Dec., 1965) stated that Protestants (except those that have beliefs clearly in contrast to the Gospel) will not go to hell. Further, Vatican II was one of the first Catholic endeavors agreed upon by 2 popes that encouraged ecumenism.V Schauf (talk) 02:54, 23 March 2017 (UTC)

The idea that the Catholic Church teaches that Protestants and Zoroastrians and animists and others who are not Catholics cannot be purified after death merits mention in this article no more than any other baseless and uncited idea. Read the article. The time for "correcting one's attitude" is before death. Also read Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus. Esoglou (talk) 21:29, 14 March 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for the links sunshine. Why the hostility? I'm planning to attend a Catholic Church anyway. Whatever. JWorkman 21:46, 14 March 2013 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by James K. Workman (talkcontribs)

I was baptized in a Baptist church but attended Catholic church. Ive never read about pergatory out of fear until today. I was on life support one year ago after an overdose. My experience is this. I felt as though i have been in pergatory for 50 years. My NDE has me convinced i was cleansed and purified to a degree because i woke up loving myself. I no longer have fear. I am no longer suffering. I am alive finally and am now living a life worth living. I feel touched by God. I am only only here by Gods grace. Psalm 23. Anyone else have a NDE. Highclassmind (talk) 15:27, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

C.S. Lewis' Opinions on Purgatory and Praying for the Dead[edit]

On page 107 of "Letters to Malcolm, Lewis states "Of course I pray for the dead. The action is so spontaneous, so all but inevitable, that only the most compelling theological case against it would deter me. And I hardly know how the rest of my prayers would survive if my prayers for the dead were forbidden. At our age, the majority of those we love best are dead. What sort of intercourse with God could I have if what I love best were unmentionable to him? But on the traditional Protestant view, all the dead are damned or saved: if they are damned, prayer for them is useless. If they are saved, it is equally useless."

On page 108 he states "But I won't press, or guess, that side for the moment. I believe in Purgatory." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:05, 16 October 2014 (UTC)

The Orthodox chapter looks very wrong and biased[edit]

On some cherry-picked quotes it makes a false appearance that Orthodox Churches aren't against the conception of purgatory in general and only single Armenian one is against, turned into a dissident. Actually they mostly are against it, including the biggest one, the Russian Orthodox Church, they completely deny Catholic biblical proofs of the purgatory, I even read an article how they laugh at Catholics, linking addition of the purgatory to dogma to the influence of 'The Divine Comedy' (and also at the very conception that people can change dogmas themselves). I'm not particularly interested in this question and don't regard wiki, which is an advertising ground of everybody you can even think of, feminists, gays, followers of Krishna, Catholics, minor Orthodox groups etc, as a serious source of information, but IMO that chapter needs a serious rewriting to be unbiased, i.e. there should be added sources that Orthodox Churches deny the purgatory and sometimes do it quite vehemently. (talk) 14:46, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

The article states: "The Orthodox Church does not believe in purgatory (a place of purging), that is, the inter-mediate state after death in which the souls of the saved (those who have not received temporal punishment for their sins) are purified of all taint preparatory to entering into Heaven, where every soul is perfect and fit to see God." Esoglou (talk) 16:41, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

Islam: OR and unreferenced[edit]

This section cites only the Qur'an (without any external links for verification, or even naming the edition used), a primary religious text that can't count towards RS (it's not a section on Qur'anic quotations, in which case it might be appropriate), and it cites no secondary RSs at all. Jujutsuan (talk | contribs) 06:30, 9 June 2016 (UTC)