Thursday, November 02, 2006

All Souls' Day

Today we celebrate All Souls' Day. From the Catholic Encyclopedia:

The commemoration of all the faithful departed is celebrated by the Church on 2 November...The Office of the Dead must be recited by the clergy and all the Masses are to be of Requiem, except one of the current feast, where this is of obligation.

The theological basis for the feast is the doctrine that the souls which, on departing from the body, are not perfectly cleansed from venial sins, or have not fully atoned for past transgressions, are debarred from the Beatific Vision, and that the faithful on earth can help them by prayers, almsdeeds and especially by the sacrifice of the Mass.

This day is also known as Le Jour des Morts, the Day of the Dead in France where it's customary to visit the graves of loved ones and place flowers on them, and most importantly to pray for them.

Today, along with praying for all the souls in Purgatory, I especially remember and pray for my English maternal grandmother, Nanny, who died of lung cancer when I was only ten. I also pray for my former choir director, Dr. Allen, who passed away not too long after I graduated.

O God! The Creator and Redeemer of all the faithful, grant to the souls of Thy servants departed the remission of all their sins: that through pious supplications they may obtain that pardon which they have always desired: Who lives and reigns world without end. Amen.

Requiem aeternam dona eis Domine; et lux perpetua luceat eis. Requiescant in pace. Amen.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen.

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