“It is a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins” (2 Maccabees 12:46).
This quotation from the Apocrypha of the Old Testament is one of the most famous scriptural references, amongst others, where it mentions that we are to pray for and think about those who have died. As Catholic Christians this is something that we are encouraged to do at many other times of the year, especially on the anniversary of our loved one’s death, their birthday and at any special times in our family like Christmas, Easter and our birthday.
During the Month of November, we remember before God all those who have died; our loved ones, friends and all those known to us. We pray for them and commit them into God’s eternal safekeeping and care.
We also remember those who have died in war and all who suffer the loss of someone close to them.
We are privileged to have our own Book of Remembrance here in School and pupils and staff are welcome to add names of loved ones into the Book and pray for them throughout this special month. The eternal flame burns daily on the altar for them and all are welcome to pop in the Chapel at break and lunchtime as they wish.
During the dates of 1st-8th November this is the Octave (8 days of prayer) for the Dead and during this time our prayers are particularly powerful for them. There are many things we can do. We can go to Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and pray for those we love in Jesus’ Real and Sacramental Presence. We can offer every Mass we attend for their souls. Every time we bless ourselves with Holy Water we can pray for the souls of those we love. We can also go to Confession for in confessing our own sins this makes our prayers more effective. We can pray! The best prayers we can say are those ones from the heart and these prayers are the traditional prayers we say in November.
Our prayers this week;
Eternal rest give to them, O Lord,
and may perpetual light shine upon them.
May they rest in peace.
May the souls of the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God, rest in peace.