An important tradition that pays homage to the faithful departed.
It is a Catholic tradition to add to this thanksgiving a short remembrance of the dead. This is traditionally prayed at the conclusion of the meal, though in practice many families recite it after saying the “Bless us, O Lord” prayer.
May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
While often glossed over, it is an important tradition that recalls those who have gone before us in the sign of faith and who can no longer participate in our meals. This becomes especially powerful after the death of a close family member.
The short prayer recalls the presence of the departed family member and includes them in a spiritual way at the table. In this way, gathering for meals presents an opportunity to not only thank God for gifts given, but also to remember the dead and to make sure their memory survives. It is also a way to pray for the poor souls in purgatory, asking God to shorten their time so that they can embrace the joys of heaven.
In this way, each meal anticipates the heavenly banquet that the liturgy calls the “Wedding Feast of the Lamb,” where we will be united again with the faithful departed for all eternity.
If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.
Here are some numbers:
- 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
- Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
- Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
- Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
- Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
- We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)
As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.
Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!