Depending on your religious affiliation, when someone dies , a prayer is said in his or her honor and in many cases, for their soul. In this article, you will encounter one of the most commonly recited of Catholic prayers, as well as examples of popular prayers for the dead.
One of the most commonly recited of Catholic prayers is the Eternal Rest , known as the prayer for the souls in purgatory. People use the prayer as a way to aid the deceased in their time in Purgatory, and seen as a way for their soul to find a quicker path into heaven. When offering the prayer for a specific person, change ‘them’ to ‘him’ or ‘her.’ The Eternal Rest prayer is: “Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.”
Eastern Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches are known to recite the Eternal Memory prayer for the ‘faithful departed.’ It is comparable to the Eternal Rest prayer that is popular in Western societies. When mentioning the “eternal memory,” the prayer refers to the remembrance by God, which translates into a way of saying that the soul has found its way to heaven and will enjoy eternal life. The Eternal Memory is “Eternal memory. Eternal memory. Grant to your servant(s), O Lord, blessed repose and eternal memory.”
Prayer for Mercy on the Souls in Purgatory
The Prayer for Mercy on the Souls in Purgatory is reserved for the most forsaken (or the people who are in the greatest need of prayer). In religious texts, it states that the pain of Purgatory will cease and all of the souls in Purgatory will enter Heaven. However, prayer and good deeds is used as a way to try to lessen the suffering of the Holy Souls.
When praying for the souls that end up in Purgatory, it is not uncommon to pray for the souls of the forsaken that do not have anyone in their corner. The Prayer for Mercy on the Souls in Purgatory is: “My Jesus, by the sorrows Thou didst suffer in Thine agony in the Garden, in Thy scourging and crowning with thorns, in the way to Calvary, in Thy crucifixion and death, have mercy on the souls in purgatory, and especially on those that are most forsaken; do Thou deliver them from the dire torments they endure; call them and admit them to Thy most sweet embrace in paradise.”
Prayer for All the Deceased
Originating from the Byzantine Divine Liturgy, the Prayer for All the Deceased brings to light the fact that Christ’s victory over death brings the prospect of eternal rest. Prayers are said for all of the souls that have made the journey into the afterlife before we are gone in hopes that they too will enter Heaven. The Prayer for All the Deceased is: “By Thy resurrection from the dead, O Christ, death no longer hath dominion over those who die in holiness. So, we beseech Thee, give rest to Thy servants in Thy sanctuary and in Abraham’s bosom. Grant it to those, who from Adam until now have adored Thee with purity, to our fathers and brothers, to our kinsmen and friends, to all men who have lived by faith and passed on their road to Thee, by a thousand ways, and in all conditions, and make them worthy of the heavenly kingdom.”