HOLY mystic Maria Simma (1915-2004) may have spent much of her life communing with souls from Purgatory who sought her help for deliverance, thus enabling her to gain much insight into how it is after (earthly) death. But unlike some other mystics, such as the visionaries of Medjugorje, she was neither ever taken to nor given a vision of Heaven in her lifetime. (In all probability though, she is now there.)
It's good for us to take interest in the afterlife. But many refuse to be serious about this, the more frequent reason being that they get depressed thinking about death which is the trigger towards the afterlife. The thought of death spoils the fun of the present and most are too engrossed with the here and now.
Since Adam and Eve, billions of people have lived on earth and have died. A hundred years from now, the present population worldwide would be gone, including you and me. All head to the afterlife, so why refuse available information about it? Especially in the Catholic world, data is not short.
And yes, Maria Simma left interesting inputs on the afterlife, as past pieces in the space have already shared. This time, her input on Heaven is included, as culled from writer Nicky Eltz's interview of her. Her insights into Heaven were gathered from her experiences with her ghostly visitors.
Q: Are there days on which more souls are delivered from Purgatory into Heaven than on others?
Simma: Yes, it is at Christmas that the most souls are delivered, but again this depends on how much was prayed or done for them. It is Christmas because Christmas is the greatest of all days for graces. And then also on Good Friday, Ascension Day and All Soul's Day many are released.
Q: What advice do you have for those who wish to become holy while here on earth?
Simma: Be humble. That's the answer. Make nothing of yourself and never forget for one moment that you are no better than ANYBODY else is. ONLY Jesus and his Mother were not poor sinners while they were here among us in the flesh.
Q: Maria, are there ways for the average person to tell when a soul he has been praying for has been delivered into Heaven?
Simma: We all have such different sensitivities, but often people have felt such a deep joy while praying that they were certain beyond any doubt that it was a signal for this. But discerning this precisely is never something to worry about. If we pray for someone who is already in Heaven the Blessed Mother takes these prayers and applies them elsewhere where they are badly needed. Not the smallest of prayers ever goes to waste.
Q: What is the fastest way for us to go to Heaven?
Simma: Again deep humility. Satan can never get near it, and it is the quickest way to get to Heaven. Then good deeds towards our neighbors and toward the Poor Souls. Acts of charity in deep humility. Look at Mother Teresa's life. For these attributes she became one of the most loved people on earth. She chose to work in the hell of Calcutta, serving the lowest, dirtiest and sickest, and that brought her to God instantly, I am sure.
Q: Are all souls in Heaven at the same and equal level?
Simma: No. The levels in Heaven are many. All the souls there are in total joy and they know that they did not earn more and thus do not want any more. Some souls there are more glorious and more luminous than others are, and this beauty depends on our good deeds while here on earth. So with greater efforts here we can go higher up in Heaven.
Q: Does a growing process of any sort still go on in Heaven?
Simma: Theology alone cannot answer this, but I know that one of the visionaries of Medugorje has described seeing her own mother with Our Lady at different times, and that over the years her mother has become increasingly beautiful. This will have to remain a mystery to us until we witness it ourselves.
Q: Do people who have never set foot inside a church go to Heaven?
Simma: Oh, certainly they do, and I'm sure many more than we think because all of us have some pride in us. But because they never had access to the truth, their Purgatory is much lighter than that of faithful church-goers. But their level of Holiness will not be the same either because they did not receive or accept the same graces. A woman appeared to me once holding a bucket and said, "This bucket is my salvation." I asked her what she meant by that, and she explained, "I hardly ever prayed and never went to church, but once I voluntarily and without charge cleaned up the house for an old lady before Christmas. It was that one loving act with this bucket that saved me." Here again we see how valuable acts of love are. The person, who never goes to church and never prays, because no one ever guided them there, has the same chance as all others do to act in God's will.
Q: Have you been shown Heaven?
Simma: No, I haven't; but many visionaries throughout history have been given glimpses of it. Some of the children of both Fatima and Medugorje saw Heaven as well as Purgatory and Hell.
Q: And do you believe them when they say that?
Simma: Yes, and with certainty. There were discerning and careful Priests around who tested them separately from one another. They were not telling stories and were actually missing for twenty minutes or so. What we know of Heaven is, of course, minuscule but the glorious light, the joy and the praising of God, who is at the center of everything, are always emphasized.
Q: Do koala bears, clematis vines, Impressionist Paintings and the 'Chorus of the Slaves' from Verdi's Opera 'Nabucco' exist in Heaven?
Simma: Ah! In Heaven, the souls tell me, all our deepest wishes are fulfilled. And concerning that piece of Verdi's, one of Our Lady's most beloved Priests once said, "Now, that is already a proof of God's existence."