By Jim Murray
NOVEMBER IS THE MONTH OF REMEMBRANCE
During the month of November, the Church sets aside time to remember all those who have died. Whether the deceased person is from your own family, a friend, a neighbor or from our parish community, the memory of that person can be honored and prayed for during this special month. We take time at the end of the Liturgical Year, during the “end times,” to remember our brothers and sisters who have fallen asleep in faith. It is important in your prayer to mention the person’s name out loud, so that their spirit is put on our lips as we pray.
There are a couple of ways that you can remember and celebrate the lives of those whom you love. Our parish “BOOK OF ETERNAL LIFE,” our special book, where you can add the names of your deceased relatives and friends during the entire month will be on display near the picture gallery of those who have passed. The parish will pray over these names, weekly, until the beginning of the Advent season. Please take a moment to add any names of your beloved deceased to this special book that you wish us to pray for during this time.
Another way is to visit a cemetery. Perhaps, make a visit St. Patrick’s parish cemetery on Rosecrans street, where you can pray for the souls of those buried there. If you wish, a visit to a relatives cemetery might be appropriate. It might be helpful to take with you on your visit, some cleaning tools, so that you can tidy up the marker and area around the grave. Don’t forget a watering can! If you have forgotten the grave location, ask at the cemetery office for your family member’s plots.
A brief prayer service you may wish to use:
Greeting: (All make the sign of the cross)
Reading: (optional) From Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians (4:13-18)
Psalm: A psalm could be read out loud by the youngest member present. Some options: Psalms 23, 25, 27, 130, 143.
Litany of the Saints: (could be recited by all present)
Our Father: (All could recite the “Our Father and the Hail Mary” together.)
Prayer: (A prayer concludes the service.)
All-powerful God, whose mercy is never withheld from those who call upon you in hope, look kindly on your servant
(N.), who departed this life confessing your name, and number them among your saints for evermore. We ask this
through Christ our Lord. AMEN.
Blessing: (A blessing prayer over the grave marker)
O God, by whose mercy the faithful departed find rest, bless this gravestone, with which we mark the resting place of (N.) May he/she have everlasting life and rejoice in you with your saints for ever. We ask this through Christ our Lord. AMEN.