Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day Prayers

In cemeteries all across the United States today, Catholics gather to pray for those who died in service to our country and all our beloved dead. For, as Saint Augustine once preached: "By the prayers of the Holy Church, and by the saving sacrifice, and by the alms which are given for their spirits, there is no doubt that the dead are aided, that the Lord might deal more mercifully with them than their sins would deserve. The whole Church observes this practice which was handed down by the Fathers...It is not at all to be doubted that such prayers are of profit to the dead; but for such of them as lived before their death in a way that makes it possible for these things to be useful to them after death."

The following prayer from the Roman Missal is for deceased relatives, friends, and benefactors.

O God,
giver of pardon and loving author of our salvation,
grant, we pray you, in your mercy,
that, through the intercession
of Blessed Mary, ever-Virgin, and all your Saints,
the members, friends, and benefactors of our community,
who have passed from this world,
may attain a share in eternal happiness.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, 
one God, for ever and ever.