November 2nd is the solemnity of All Souls Day. It follows the solemnity of All Saints Day which is celebrated on November 1st. November is a month dedicated to the faithful departed, and the church sets aside the month to commemorate the deceased marked with the sign of faith. It is an act of charity and a corporal work of mercy to pray for and to visit the gravesites of those who have gone before us. Here are simple ways you and your family can remember all souls during the month of November and beyond.
Daily prayer for those who have died is a beautiful way to not only commemorate the lives of the deceased, but also in making a difference for their souls. Prayer as an eternal gift especially to those souls who depend on our prayers in their destination toward heaven.
We are all on a journey toward heaven, and the gift of prayer for our family, friends, and others who have died is indeed priceless. This gift is greater than anything as it encompasses both now and forever. As Catholics, we believe that prayer for the deceased benefits souls who are on the pathway to heaven. Your prayers help those on this path who may not have arrived in heaven quite yet.
The church teaches of Purgatory as a place of cleansing and preparation as souls who enter heaven are undefiled and completely cleansed of all sin. Those souls who have made it to heaven are saints. They celebrate eternal beatitude with the Lord. For this reason, prayers are golden when it comes to those dedicated to the faithful departed and their final destination.
Remembering and imitating the good
When we remember the goodness and virtue of our family and friends who have died, we are helping to continue their legacy of faith. It is a beautiful way to bring the love that person gave to others and to keep the flame of faith alive through virtue. Think about what you can do to continue the legacy of a family member or good friend by imitating the goodness of their lives. There is nothing quite like keeping love and faith alive through the imitation of one who has made a positive impact on our lives of faith.
Have Masses said
The best way to remember a deceased loved one is to have Masses said for them. It is a good practice and a wonderful way to support your parish or a religious community to arrange to have Masses said as well. It is also beautiful to be able to attend the Masses you have set aside for loved ones and to be present for the Eucharist and partake. Be sure to invite family members to attend and mark your calendar to make it a habit each year in celebration of family and friends who have died.
Whatever you decide to do for the month of November, invite children, family, and friends to join in. Losing a loved one is never easy, however joining in together to remember those souls is a precious way to love and commemorate them.
The gift of your prayers, Masses, and faithful remembrances will be cherished not just during your lifetime but for all eternity. Pass on these traditions to children in order to celebrate those who have gone before for many years to come in prayerful remembrance. This is a blessing not just for you but especially for all those who have gone before us marked with the sign of faith.
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