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All Souls Day

November 2

The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed, or All Souls Day, is a holy day on November 2, to pray for the souls in purgatory who aspire to heaven. When praying for them, we are also inspired to lead holier lives. On All Souls Day, and during the entire month of November, we can remember departed loved ones by praying for them, visiting their graves at the cemetery where they are buried, attain indulgences for them, and ask for Masses to be said for them.

“From the beginning the Church has honored the memory of the dead and offered prayers in suffrage for them, above all the Eucharistic sacrifice, so that, thus purified, they may attain the beatific vision of God.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church 1032)

Although not a Holy Day of Obligation, many parishes have All Souls Day Masses to pray for the faithful departed.  Priests are authorized to say three Masses on this day.

Eternal Rest Prayer:

“Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May their souls, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.  Amen.”

Learn more from Northwest Catholic:

How do you honor and pray for loved ones who have died?

Prayer for visiting a cemetery

Catholic Home – Remembering the dead, supporting the living

Día de Muertos (or Día de los Muertos) is a holiday celebrated throughout Mexico around the Commemoration of the Faithful Departed (All Souls) on November 2nd. It is a time of remembrance of and prayer for deceased loved ones. The observance of the Day of the Dead has both religious and cultural aspects, not all of which are appropriate in the context of parish life.  Click here for a guidebook which is intended to help parishes celebrate Día de Muertos appropriately.  The Day of the Dead celebrations are an opportunity for evangelization of our Catholic tradition of prayer for the dead, and our hope for eternal life in Jesus Christ.


November 2
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