ALL SOULS : Saturday 2nd November 2019

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  • ALL SOULS : Saturday 2nd November 2019

Eternal rest and everlasting life and joy grant unto all, O Lord,

ALL SOULS : Saturday 2nd November 2019

Is. 25:6-9; Ps. 27(26):1,4,7-9,13-14;
Rom 5:5-11; Lk. 7:11-17 (Ps Wk II)

All cultures have faced the inevitable mystery of death with various rites of remembrance and reverence for the dead. Thus, the Second Book of Maccabees, which we read at times during the Mass for the dead, recounts at length the death by martyrdom of faithful Jews and almost inevitably reflects that “it is a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead” [2 Macc 12:45]. So the Church wisely sets aside a day when we are encouraged to remember and pray for our dead.

In some countries, where there has been no traditional day set aside like the Chinese “Ching Ming festival” for the sweeping of the graves, the Church (as in Ireland) has come to set side one Sunday of the year, referred to as “Cemetery Sunday”, when the faithful are encouraged to visit and clean and adorn the graves or tombs of ancestors and other family members. Theologically remembering the dead is a good symbol of our doctrine that the Church on earth is one with the Church in heaven in the “communion of saints”, as we confess in the Creed at Mass.

Eternal rest and everlasting life and  joy grant unto them, O Lord, and deepen and strengthen our own hope in the resurrection.