Tuesday, November 17, 2015
Two Easy Ways to Remember to Pray for the Dead - my latest on Catholicmom.com
One of the casualties of my “spirit of Vatican 2” Catholic-school education was the practice of praying for the dead. It wasn’t that I didn’t know I was supposed to pray for the dead. In fact, my grandparents and my mother were quite good about doing that. It’s just that Catholic education in the late 70s didn’t really emphasize the necessity of keeping that practice. So I entered my early adult years with no habit, routine or intention of praying for the dead.
That all changed with the stillbirth of my sixth baby. I needed to pray for him and feel God’s mercy and grace for his little soul. That event was a reminder that this time on earth is fleeting, and that as Catholic Christians we were all part of that great communion of saints. As I worked through my grief, the belief that all of our souls, even the soul of my precious little unborn baby, were part of God’s big plan, and that someday I would be able to see my baby, and hold him and talk to him, got me through. I experienced this realization even more so after the death of my mother in 2009.
A few years later I had the opportunity to find the grave of my grandparents and my uncle. I had been there before, but I always forget exactly where they are buried. We found them. Their graves were overgrown and abandoned. That wasn’t true, of course. They were still loved deeply. Yet my practice of praying for their souls was a lot like their graves – untended, and uncared-for.
See the rest at Catholicmom.com