St. John of the Cross calls the Dark Night a "purgatory". And, as he, and later Garrigou-Lagrange tell us over and over, only the perfect see God.
Knowing that only those who have gone through the Dark Night of the Senses and who go into the Dark Night of the Spirit actually are pure enough to be free of the ego and work for God in the Church and not themselves. one wonders why more people do not cooperate with the graces of the Dark Night.
I first wrote this post in 2013, a follow-up distilling some of the characteristics of the Dark Night from John of the Cross' writings showing that one can endure this purgation here and now.
Why wait until purgatory? Why put off what can be done for the benefit of the Church as a whole and not merely for one's own benefit?
Many Church leaders are stuck in the lowest stages of spiritual growth. This is often too obvious, as actions from those cardinals, bishops, priests, nuns, lay people who are caught up in acting out of their egos rather than doing God's work are clear, if one is allowing God to deal with one in purification. Those in purgation see the evils of the ego, perhaps for the first time in their lives.
I do not need to name personages, but it is clear to me that too many cardinals and bishops are acting totally out of worldly standards of seeking fame, status, or achieving worldly goals. If we had more leaders who could give us good examples of humility and a purified will, the Church would be in a different place.
That so many of the laity think they can only achieve purgatory, instead of perfection, is a tragedy of our times. One is not a canonized saint if one makes it to purgatory. Sorry, saints are those willing to go through purgatory on earth, another name for the Dark Nights of the Senses and Spirit. Remember, only the perfect see God, which means, going right into heaven. The rest must be purged of sin and the tendencies to sin.
Cooperating with purgation here and now benefits not only the individual, but the entire Church.