1. What is meant by “the communion of saints” in the Apostles’ Creed? This is the union of the faithful on earth, the blessed in heaven, and the souls in purgatory, with Christ as their Head.
2. Through the communion of saints, what can the blessed in heaven do for the souls in purgatory and the faithful on earth? The blessed in heaven can help the souls in purgatory and the faithful on earth by praying for them.
3. Should the faithful on earth, through the communion of saints, honor the blessed in heaven and pray to them? Yes, because they are worthy of honor and as friends of God will help the faithful on earth.
4. Can the faithful on earth, through the communion of saints, relieve the sufferings of the souls in purgatory? Yes, by prayer, fasting, good works, by indulgences, and by having Masses offered for them.
5. Can the faithful on earth help one another? Yes, by practicing supernatural charity and the spiritual and corporal works of mercy.
6. What is meant in the Apostles’ Creed by “the forgiveness of sins”? That God has given to the Church, through Jesus Christ, the power to forgive sins, no matter how great or how many they are, if sinners truly repent.
7. What is meant by “the resurrection of the body”? That at the end of the world the bodies of all men will rise from the earth and be united again to their souls, nevermore to be separated.
8. Why will the bodies of the just rise? The bodies of the just will rise to share forever in the glory of their souls.
9. Has the body of any human person ever been raised from the dead and taken into heaven? By the special privilege of her Assumption, the body of the Blessed Virgin Mary, united to her immaculate soul, was glorified and taken into heaven.
10. Why will the bodies of the damned also rise? The bodies of the damned will also rise to share in the eternal punishment of their souls.
11. What is the judgment called which will be passed on all men immediately after the general resurrection? It is called the general judgment.
12. What is the judgment called which will be passed on each one of us immediately after death? It is called the particular judgment.
13. If everyone is judged immediately after death, why will there be a general judgment? Although everyone is judged immediately after death, it is fitting that there be a general judgment in order that the justice, wisdom, and mercy of God may be glorified in the presence of all.
14. What are the rewards or punishments appointed for men after the particular judgment? The rewards or punishments appointed for men after the particular judgment are heaven, purgatory, or hell.
15. Who are punished in purgatory? Those are punished for a time in purgatory who die in the state of grace but are guilty of venial sin, or have not fully satisfied for the temporal punishment due to their sins.
16. Who are punished in hell? Those are punished in hell who die in mortal sin; they are deprived of the vision of God and suffer dreadful torments, especially that of fire, for all eternity.
17. Who are rewarded in heaven? Those are rewarded in heaven who have died in the state of grace and have been purified in purgatory, if necessary, from all venial sin and all debt of temporal punishment; they see God face to face and share forever in His glory and happiness.
18. What is meant by the word “Amen,” with which we end the Apostles’ Creed? By the word “Amen,” with which we end the Apostles’ Creed, is meant “So it is,” or “So be it”; the word expresses our firm belief in all the doctrines that the Creed contains.