Celebrating All Souls’ Day-a day when we remember those who have died before us.
Celebrating All Souls’ Day
Why do we celebrate All Souls’ Day? We celebrate it because we are happy that the souls who have gone before us are in Heaven or almost there. We can celebrate this feast day by remembering those we love who have died and by praying for them and for all the souls of the people who have passed away.
What is the difference between All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day?
Yes, they are two different days in the liturgical (or Church) calendar.
The feast of All Saints is on November 1st. On this day, we celebrate and remember all the saints in Heaven. The term saint refers to a soul who is in Heaven already. Therefore, everyone who is in Heaven is a saint.
On the next day, All Souls’ Day (November 2), we remember everyone who has died. The term soul is used because it is unknown if the souls of everyone who have died are in Heaven. The soul of a person who has died may be in Purgatory or even hell.
Why is the feast of All Souls important?
Have you ever asked someone you know to pray for you? Yes, you can pray for yourself, but more prayers are even better, right? The souls in Purgatory cannot pray for themselves.
(Purgatory is a place of purification where a soul with sin goes before it can enter Heaven. Since no one with sin can enter Heaven, anyone who dies with sin on his or her soul will go to Purgatory before Heaven so that all remaining sin on the person’s soul can be purged.)
Since these souls cannot pray for themselves, it is important that we pray for them. The more prayers a soul in Purgatory receives, the better.
Pray for all souls.
All Souls’ Day is a day we set aside each year in the Catholic Church calendar to remind us to pray for all souls. We can certainly pray for souls all year long, but we have this one special day set aside for remembering them in a special way. We show them that they are important, we care about them, we recognize them as part of our family of faith, and we remember them.
So, how can we pray for the souls of those who have gone before us?
Go to Mass.
The Mass is the best prayer in the Catholic faith. We receive Jesus in the Eucharist during Mass. The Mass, where we are united more intimately with Jesus, is a wonderful place to pray for all souls.
Pray a Rosary.
When we pray a Rosary, we meditate on the events in the lives of Jesus and Mary. Jesus died for our sins so we can go to Heaven. The Rosary is a great prayer use to pray for all souls, that they may soon be in Heaven with Jesus and Mary.
Pray a Divine Mercy Chaplet.
Jesus Himself gave St. Faustina the Divine Mercy prayer. As we reflect on the divine love and mercy of God, we can pray for the souls who have died, that they may receive God’s Divine Mercy and be with Him in Heaven soon.
Pray using your own words.
A simple prayer from your heart is a beautiful prayer as well.
A prayer from the heart can be long or short. You can say many prayers during the day for souls. If you are stopped at a light while driving, waiting on hold on the phone, or your baby has (finally!) gone down for a nap, you can offer up a short prayer for all souls or for a particular soul.
Celebrating All Souls’ Day with prayer
When we pray for the souls who have died before us, we remember them, and we acknowledge them as our brothers and sisters in Christ. Jesus died for all of us, so that we may be with Him in Heaven. What better way to help each other out than to pray for each other as one family so that our brothers and sisters will reach Heaven soon?
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