Praying for the Faithful Departed: In Hope of Being with Christ the King Forever

Throughout November, which begins with All Saints Day (Thursday, November 1) and All Souls Day (Friday, November 2), Catholics remember and pray for those who have gone ahead marked with the sign of faith.

From earliest days, Christians have recalled their dead in prayer, particularly at Mass, living out the communion of saints which Vatican Council II described as follows:

When the Lord comes in glory ..., death will be no more and all things will be subject to him. But at the present time some of his disciples are pilgrims on earth. Others have died and are being purified, while still others are in glory, contemplating in full light God himself triune and one, exactly as he is....

All, indeed, who are of Christ and who have his Spirit form one Church and in Christ cleave together. So it is that the union of the wayfarers with the brethren who sleep in the peace of Christ is in no way interrupted, but on the contrary, according to the constant faith of the Church, this union is reinforced by an exchange of spiritual goods (Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium #49).

All are encouraged to assist at Mass on these important days andto the degree possiblevisit cemeteries to pray for the repose of the souls of the deceased clergy, religious and lay faithful.

The month of November culminates the whole liturgical year. After reading and praying about the end of time in the Sunday and daily Mass readings, we celebrate the Solemnity of Christ our King on Sunday, November 25.

Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus!
Lord Jesus, come in glory!

Most Rev. Terrence Prendergast, S.J.
Archbishop of Ottawa