ten reasons to pray daily for the dead
"If he were not expecting the fallen to rise again, it would have been useless and foolish to pray for them in death." —2 Maccabees 12:44
Why should we pray for the dead?
- Some dead people have committed their lives to Jesus and lived for Him. So they can't go to hell. However, they are not fully holy and purified. So they can't immediately go to heaven (see Heb 12:14). They need our prayers for them to "grow to the full maturity of Christ" (Eph 4:15).
- The Lord says in His word that it is "a holy and pious thought" to pray for the dead (2 Mc 12:45).
- The Lord implies in His word that some sins can be forgiven after we die (Mt 12:32).
- If we pray for the dead, we are expressing our faith in Jesus, the Resurrection and the Life (Jn 11:25).
- Praying for the dead is a sign of hope.
- Praying for the dead shows that love is so strong that it can break the barrier of death (see Sg 8:6).
- Praying for the dead shows the awesome power of prayer.
- If we pray for the dead, we are following the example of the first Christians, listening to the Church, and praying together with millions of Christians.
- Praying for the dead helps us grow in faith, love, and holiness.
- Primarily, we pray for the dead because God wants us to do so, and we want to please Him.
Prayer: "Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen."
Promise: "If we have died with Christ, we believe that we are also to live with Him." —Rm 6:8
Praise: Praise the Father of mercies, our risen Savior, and the Spirit of truth!
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, April 10, 1999
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 16, 1999