All Souls Day
"Happy are those
who have died in the Lord.
Let them rest from their labors,
for their good deeds
go with them."
I am a couple of days late posting this seeing All Saints Day is Nov. 1st and All Souls Day is Nov. 2nd in western Christianity. The Eastern Orthodox Church dedicates several days throughout the year to the dead, mostly on Saturdays, because of Jesus' resting in the tomb on Saturday. I'm not exactly sure but some Anglicans and Lutherans may also practice All Souls Day.
But for Catholics the month of November is the month we pray for our deceased loved ones.
Historically tradition identifies the general custom of praying for the dead with the Jewish practice of prayer for the dead dating as far back as 2 Maccabees 12:42-46.
2 Maccabees 12:42-46 "42 And so betaking themselves to prayers, they besought him, that the sin which had been committed might be forgotten. But the most valiant Judas exhorted the people to keep themselves from sin, forasmuch as they saw before their eyes what had happened, because of the sins of those that were slain. 43 And making a gathering, he sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection, 44 (For if he had not hoped that they that were slain should rise again, it would have seemed superfluous and vain to pray for the dead,) 45 And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them. 46 It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins."
2 Maccabees is an Apocrypha book according to Protestants but the Apocrypha books are gaining more interest since they were found in the Dead Sea Scrolls discovered at Qumran in 1947. I guess that is why this online version of the King James Bible includes the Apocrypha books.
2 Maccabees is one of the many reasons why Catholics believe in purgatory, simply sin can not exist in heaven.
Whether you believe in purgatory or not it wouldn't hurt for you to pray for your deceased loved ones. Here's a couple of prayers that you could use.
Prayer of Saint Gertrude the Great. Dictated by Our Lord, to release 1000 souls from purgatory each time it is said.
Eternal Father, I offer Thee the Most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son Jesus Christ, in union with the most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, said throughout the world today, for all the holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the Universal Church, those in my own home, and within my family.
I pray for all those —
family and friends, saints and strangers —
who have gone before me
from this world to be with You.
May their sins be cleansed.
May their souls be united with You
fully and without delay.
May they experience the everlasting joy
of your presence.
Help me to hope, Lord,
that those who have died on Earth
live on with you in heaven,
and that, through our prayers, they speak to us still.
Help me to follow your ways, O Lord,
that one day I, too, may walk in
the wonders of heaven,
meet the glorious ancestors of our faith,
be reunited with those I love,
and live in perfect friendship with You
for all eternity.
I appreciate your information as you have convinced me you're more well-versed than the average person. I am here to learn more than I'm here to help others learn. I have a Scripture that came to mind which is leading me to seek more clarification concerning what you've presented:
Philippians 2:12 (King James Version)
12 -- Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.
Salvation here means "deliverance, preservation from danger or destruction, welfare, prosperity." So in short, it's up to every individual to do what's necessary to assure that he or she obtains God's gift of salvation. To further underscore that, take Luke 9:23-24:
23 -- And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. 24 -- For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.
So I can't take up your cross for you, and you can't take up my cross for me. I don't understand how my prayers can help your sins be forgiven if that's not what you will. In order for that kind of prayer to work, the two have to agree BEFOREHAND -- here's some proof:
Matthew 18:19 (King James Version)
19 -- Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.
So if you don't think you need forgiveness, and I think you do, my prayer won't work because we didn't agree. And that's the gist of why I don't see how my prayers'll help anyone who's dead already. But I am listening . . .
I don't see how the verses you posted have anything to do with praying for your deceased loved ones. I'm mean you would have to think that praying for someone else doesn't help at all to understand what you are saying.
I didn't post this to get into a long drawn out debate about praying for your deceased loved ones and I don't want to get into one. Either you will or you won't, it's up to you.
My bad -- this is going somewhere I didn't want it to go. I'm all for praying for someone else; I'm just trying to understand the good I can do as far as praying for someone that's deceased -- that's all. No harm meant.
I think I owe you an apology lgolden1911. There are some people that seem to try to attack everything that some people post in here. Sometimes it's hard to tell the difference.
To understand more about praying for your deceased loved ones I think it would first be best to understand purgatory. It's not a bad thing, the Holy Souls in purgatory are on their way to heaven. This page on purgatory lists quite a few scriptural verses referring to it then has some Church Fathers writings on purgatory.
No problem, sir; I totally understand -- as a former moderator on a blog site, trust me; I know what you mean. I appreciate the link on purgatory.
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