Interview with Francisco Romero-Carrasquillo, Professor of Philosphy, Miami, FL. Author of blog: Ite ad Thomam
Where is Purgatory?
How do the fires of Purgatory differ from those of Hell?
-I quote Aquinas. In Book IV of his Commentary on Peter Lombard’s Sentences (distinction 21, article 1), he asks “Whether purgatory and hell are in the same place.” He answers:
"In Sacred Scripture one cannot find anything explicit regarding the location of purgatory, nor is it possible to formulate adequate arguments on this point. However, one can formulate a probable argument, based on the sayings and [private] revelations of the Saints, that the location of purgatory is twofold.The first is by common law; accordingly, the place of purgatory is a low place conjoined to Hell, such that it is the same fire that both burns the damned in hell and purifies the just in purgatory, although the damned, because they are inferior in merit, are in fact sent to a lower place.The other is by special dispensation. And thus, sometimes we read that some people are punished in different places, either for the instruction of the living, or for the liberation of the dead, so that, alerting the living, their punishment might be mitigated through the suffrages of the Church."
More from the good philospher on Purgatory in subsequent posts!