bold is mine
"PURGATORY: An Introduction
Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger; renowned theologian, Cardinal Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (the former Holy Office), which is the most important Vatican curial office, charged with the preservation and promotion of Catholic orthodoxy, now Pope Benedict XVI, stated, “My view is that if Purgatory did not exist, we should have to invent it.’”
At a class on the Roman Catholic Faith the teacher, Hermano Juan Sandoval was speaking on Purgatory when from the audience a question was asked to the effect of “If Purgatory is such an important doctrine, why didn’t Jesus teach us about it.” In one single breath Hermano Sandoval answered that the doctrine is not found in the Bible but that we could look it up in Matthew 12:32. This contradictory answer is very common because while the dogma is not Biblical the claim is made that the Bible implies it. After the class while discussing the issue with a Roman Catholic class attendee I pointed out that 2nd Maccabees 12:38-46 (the mother of all Purgatory scriptures) was not speaking of Purgatory and the footnotes in the Vatican approved Bible state as much. The response was yes it is speaking of Purgatory, and I repeated the Hermano’s words in saying that we were just taught that the doctrine of Purgatory is not found anywhere in the Bible. The student was kind enough to bring me a list of scriptures that attempt to prove the doctrine of Purgatory from the Bible.
This true story is a good example of the sorts of problems that false doctrines cause. Without any sense of irony the teacher contradicted himself, and the student contradicted the teacher.
This is isogesis, which is when we come to the Scripture with a preconceived notion and try to force the text to say what we want. As opposed to exegesis, which is when we come to the text with a clean slate and we allow the text to tell us what it says.
Our purpose here will be to examine Purgatory proof texts, their footnotes and definitions from Roman Catholic Bibles. The Scriptures will be quoted from the New American Bible and the footnotes come from various other Roman Catholic Bibles and will be footnoted appropriately.
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation
for those who are in Christ Jesus”
ok, what i posted is a blog, but what do you think?
"Money, Money, Money
One argument anti-Catholics often use to attack purgatory is the idea that the Catholic Church makes money from promulgating the doctrine. Without purgatory, the claim asserts, the Church would go broke. Any number of anti-Catholic books claim the Church owes the majority of its wealth to this doctrine. But the numbers just don’t add up.
When a Catholic requests a memorial Mass for the dead—that is, a Mass said for the benefit of someone in purgatory—it is customary to give the parish priest a stipend, on the principles that the laborer is worth his hire (Luke 10:7) and that those who preside at the altar share the altar’s offerings (1 Cor. 9:13–14). In the United States, a stipend is commonly around five dollars; but the indigent do not have to pay anything. A few people, of course, freely offer more. This money goes to the parish priest, and priests are only allowed to receive one such stipend per day. No one gets rich on five dollars a day, and certainly not the Church, which does not receive the money anyway.
But look at what happens on a Sunday. There are often hundreds of people at Mass. In a crowded parish, there may be thousands. Many families and individuals deposit five dollars or more into the collection basket; others deposit less. A few give much more. A parish might have four or five or six Masses on a Sunday. The total from the Sunday collections far surpasses the paltry amount received from the memorial Masses.
A Catholic "Invention"?
Fundamentalists may be fond of saying the Catholic Church "invented" the doctrine of purgatory to make money, but they have difficulty saying just when. Most professional anti-Catholics—the ones who make their living attacking "Romanism"—seem to place the blame on Pope Gregory the Great, who reigned from A.D. 590–604.
But that hardly accounts for the request of Monica, mother of Augustine, who asked her son, in the fourth century, to remember her soul in his Masses. This would make no sense if she thought her soul would not benefit from prayers, as would be the case if she were in hell or in the full glory of heaven.
Nor does ascribing the doctrine to Gregory explain the graffiti in the catacombs, where Christians during the persecutions of the first three centuries recorded prayers for the dead. Indeed, some of the earliest Christian writings outside the New Testament, like the Acts of Paul and Thecla and the Martyrdom of Perpetua and Felicity (both written during the second century), refer to the Christian practice of praying for the dead. Such prayers would have been offered only if Christians believed in purgatory, even if they did not use that name for it. (See Catholic Answers’ Fathers Know Best tract The Existence of Purgatory for quotations from these and other early Christian sources.)"