Prayer for the Dead

Praise be Jesus Christ, now and forever.


After Christmas, Americans spend the most money on the occasion of Halloween. We spend more on Halloween than on Easter. That is amazing to me, as Easter is surely the most important event in the Christian calendar. What is also somewhat distressing to me is how Halloween has become a time in which we view ghosts and other Halloween phenomenon as evil. Just look at all the scary movies during the month of October. Yet, All Hallows Eve, even in the pagan Celtic culture was not viewed in the manner that we have allowed it to become. All Hallows Eve has always been a time to think about our dead and to try to be close to those we love and honor. Obviously, All Hallows Eve, as well as All Saints Day and All Souls Day were a trilogy of holy days for the Catholic faith. During the Reformation there were various denials by influential Protestant theologians as to the validity of Purgatory. Thus, a movement away from the prayer for the dead, because according to that Protestant theology, a dead person was either in Heaven or Hell and there was no point in praying for anyone's soul as nothing would change that final determination. It has also been a sad time during this pandemic to not only deal with the death of many, but to realize there was no recognition of the life. Many of our deceased were just cremated or put into the ground and that was it - no prayer, no ceremony, no Mass! For those of us who know better it is time to remember our dead, especially those who have no one to pray for them. On All Souls Day, let us begin to pray for our dead. And let us make this month of November a special time of prayer for all those who have died, in particular, those who have recently died from this terrible pandemic and those who have died due to the continuing violence in Flint and in our world. On All Saints Day, we are recognizing those who have received their eternal reward and are praying with us. I believe in Purgatory. There are simply way too many of us who do not deserve hell, but at the same time have not done enough to achieve heaven. We are the Body of Christ and we can make up for those who did not do enough. It all comes down to our faith in Jesus Christ. He died and rose from the dead because of the Love of God for us. We are the ones who should know how to deal with death and we do so because we have that Love of God within us.


Holy Mary, Mother of Flint, pray for us now and at the hour of our death. Amen.


You're all in my prayers and heart.

Fr. Tom