The Queen of Peace of Medjugorje said on June 25, 1993:
Indeed, in this particular time, belief in hell has radically fallen amongst believers, and now even for Heaven and Purgatory the same. Some believe you will eventually get out of hell or if you do go to hell, it one day will cease to be, therefore, the sufferings of those in hell, will end. Still others believe that hell does not even exist. Almost no Protestants believe in Purgatory and completely reject the idea of a place of immense purification, not accepting Scripture which relates nothing defiled enters into the presence of God in regards to those who salvation was granted still must atone for life’s sin by being purified in this life or another place
A teacher at a Christian school asked his Christian students to really believe they had just been told they have three days left to live. What would they do with their three days. Very few of them mentioned spiritual things. A shockingly large percentage, almost all, said they would break their virginity to see what it was like before they died. After several other, “This is what I would do,” the teacher concluded that some how even Christian youth today do not understand Heaven. He relayed that they equate Heaven into earthly experiences that many youth who even believe in God somehow believe if they do not get to have certain experiences on earth, that somehow they will be cheated out of something of which Heaven could not give. Their concept of Heaven is, Heaven can’t possibly give them the fun, excitement or happiness that some experiences could give, and if they don’t take the opportunity, they will miss the chance forever, even if the experience is sinful.
Our Lady, in this particular time, has seen the void in man’s heart and need for us to change our mentalities. Our Lady gave a radical experience to Vicka and Jakov, who was only 11-years-old. They were physically taken to three places to show that, yes, Heaven exists, a place and experience beyond anything an imagination could conceive on earth. That, yes, Purgatory exists with a suffering in a way that can never be expressed in the most terrible suffering in a thousand life times on earth.
Imagine the terror of strangling to death – a minute or two and it is over. But imagine elongated strangling for months, even years. Vicka used the word “strangling” as one aspect of the suffering in Purgatory, a ghastly suffering, knowledge of which should give us an impulse to pray for the poor souls in Purgatory.
A special note worthy to know about Purgatory is when you pray for a loved one by name who is in Purgatory, they can see you, their loved one on earth at that moment. This also should be an impulse to pray for them on special occasions or family gatherings, allowing them an apparition of you and your family on earth at that moment.
And yes, hell exists in a degree that if you went there as Jakov and Vicka, you would not want your worst enemy to go there. St. Faustina visited hell also. Her description, found in Diary – Divine Mercy in My Soul, follows:
Today, I was led by an Angel to the chasms of hell. It is a place of great torture; how awesomely large and extensive it is! The kinds of tortures I saw: the first torture that constitutes hell is the loss of God; the second is perpetual remorse of conscience; the third is that one’s condition will never change; the fourth is the fire that will penetrate the soul without destroying it – a terrible suffering, since it is a purely spiritual fire, lit by God’s anger; the fifth torture is continual darkness and a terrible suffocating smell, and, despite the darkness, the devils and the souls of the damned see each other and all the evil, both of others and their own; the sixth torture is the constant company of satan; the seventh torture is horrible despair, hatred of God, vile words, curses and blasphemies. These are the tortures suffered by all the damned together, but that is not the end of the sufferings. There are special tortures destined for particular souls. These are the torments of the senses. Each soul undergoes terrible and indescribable sufferings, related to the manner in which it has sinned. There are caverns and pits of torture where one form of agony differs from another. I would have died at the very sight of these tortures if the omnipotence of God had not supported me. Let the sinner know that he will be tortured throughout all eternity, in those senses which he made use of to sin. I am writing this at the command of God, so that no soul may find an excuse by saying there is no hell, or that nobody has ever been there, and so no one can say what it is like.”1
Jakov and Vicka are the only two human beings in the history of the world who were physically in body, taken by the hand by the Holy Virgin Mary, to Heaven, Purgatory and hell. Our Lady wanted to dispel atheistic thoughts that these places are not real – they exist, they exist, they exist.
In the Love of Neighbor
To Turn Away From Sin,
1. Diary – Divine Mercy in My Soul, the Diary of St. Faustina Kowalska
More About Heaven, Purgatory and hell