Is purgatory a place or process? (20 Top Answers)

Purgatory, according to St. John Paul II, is not a real place, but rather a process of purification.

When contemplating the afterlife, it’s easy to see purgatory as a distinct “place” or “location” to which all souls are consigned before accessing Heaven.

Is purgatory a place or process
Is purgatory a place or process


However, the Catholic Church argues that purgatory is more of a “process” than a “location.”


Is purgatory a place or process? (20 Top Answers) :

During a public audience in 1999, St. John Paul II presented a catechesis on purgatory, outlining what the Church believes about purgatory.

Purification must be thorough, and this is precisely what the Church’s teaching on purgatory means. The phrase does not refer to a specific location, but rather to a state of being. Those who remain in a condition of purification after death are already in Christ’s love, which eliminates the traces of imperfection from them.

The Catholic Church’s Catechism similarly avoids referring to purgatory as a “place,” instead focusing on the process.

All who die in God’s mercy and friendship, but yet inadequately pure, are guaranteed of everlasting salvation; but, after death, they must be purified in order to reach the purity required to enjoy the bliss of paradise.

Purgatory is the name given by the Church to the last purification of the chosen.

Purgatory, while it may appear to be a place where spirits go, is far more complex, and we can never truly understand what it is like unless we experience it for ourselves.


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