March 28

Prayer for the Dead

Praying that the Lord be merciful in judging those who have gone before us in faith is a deeply rooted and important christian tradition. It's something that everyone should consider doing before they die, and it can be done at any time in their life. We'll explore in this blog post what prayer for the dead really means. And how to pray for someone who has passed away, and why you should do it regularly.

Can you pray for a dead person?

As read in the quote from the book of Maccabees in the Old Testament, it is “a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins” (2 Maccabees 12:45).

This line from scripture is often used in support of the Catholic faith’s doctrine of Purgatory and praying for souls there. Purgatory is the temporary abode of those souls who have died who don’t merit hell but aren’t quite ready for heaven. Their sins have been forgiven by God, they are departed through the Mercy of God, but atonement for them still must be made. Therefore these souls must be purged of any remaining attachments to sin or other such imperfections before entering paradise.

Because nothing impure can enter heaven.

We all have different levels of closeness to death. It's important to recognize the end-of-life process as a natural part. As Christians we don't die, as Christians we are immortal.

Prayer for the dead is a sacred act

We know that God's mercy and justice also reach those who have already died. For he has made provision for them in his Son Jesus Christ. We should therefore remember that these prayers are usually not in vain. So whenever you pray for someone who has passed away, these prayers are very welcome! It is very useful act of charity that you do.

You can do it anytime. Some people like to have a priest pray with them before they die or after their loved one passes away. Prayer helps us remember those we've lost and honor what they meant in our lives. While giving them peace and a sense of closure until we meet again on the other side. It's important because there will be times when memories may fade, especially if years go by. This way, even though they aren't physically here anymore, their memory is alive in our hearts and minds and souls.

The Power of Prayer

Anytime you want to experience God’s presence, prayer is something that can bring you closer. Praying means making use of God's power and the Holy Spirit to help your and other's life. The act of praying helps people stay grounded and centered when everything around them feels as though it's falling apart. It provides a sense of calmness. No matter what else is happening in one’s life, this person will be able to have their faith.

Praying for the dead not only means entrusting them with Faith to the Lord’s mercy. Through prayers, we meditate on the Mindfulness of Death and the promise of Eternal Life signed by Jesus Christ our Lord.

For more information please read Why prayer is important.

Pray with Love

The most important part about prayer is that you are following your heart and doing it to the best of your ability. Because it is a powerful act of love towards God and the person you are praying for, even when they are no longer alive.

Prayers should be done with sincerity and love because, in the end, that’s what really matters.

Prayers are a great way to show appreciation and gratitude for all the good things you have in your life. As well as help those who need it most in their time of hardship. It’s important that people don't just pray when they want something. God is not like a bank card where you can withdraw money whenever you need it!

Can you pray for the dead to go to heaven?

Yes, you can pray for the dead in order to give them relief and have them go to heaven faster. Praying for the dead not only allows us to show our concern and solidarity, but it can also shorten their time of Purgatory. As they have not reached heaven yet. In other words, we are all in this together! The Catholic church also encourages people to pray close to those who have died (such as relatives).

How do you pray for someone who has died?

Prayer for the dead are typically done in a group setting, such as a church or with other members of the faith community. But, it can also be done privately if one wishes to do so alone.

They are several brilliant prayers that are very effective in asking for the dead. These prayers are for our departed loved ones, including parents and clergy.

Short Prayer for the dead

The first of our selections is maybe one of the most famous prayers for the deceased.

Eternal Rest prayer

"Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.

And let perpetual light shine upon them.

And may the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.


Get into the routine of saying "Eternal Rest Prayer" wherever your mind travels. Which could be during a walk in the cemetery, incorporating in your morning and before-bed prayers. Or when you are sitting in a vigil with the deceased one's family.

Other short Prayers

"O Lord, give eternal rest to the poor souls. And the eternal light shine upon them. O Lord, let them rest in peace. Amen."

"Through the precious blood of Jesus, Heavenly Father, redeem our dear dead and let Your holy angels bring them home to Your eternal love! Amen."

"Eternal rest grant untothem, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen."

"Mother of God, you comforter of the poor souls, all you angels, and saints, pray for them! Amen."

"Recompense, O Lord, because I cannot, the good they have done me!"

"In the name of Jesus Christ forgiveness and mercy! Amen."

St Gertrude’s Prayer

The Lord told St Gertrude, a 13th-century German nun and mystic that this prayer if piously recited would release 1000 souls from Purgatory.

"Eternal Father, I offer You the most precious blood of thy Divine Son, Jesus, in union with the Masses said throughout the world today, for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the universal church, for those in my own home and in my family. Amen."

Novena for the dead

A novena represents a 9-consecutive-day period of prayer. This particular prayer can be used entirely or adapted according to the need.

Some people pray the novena while using a different prayer for each day. Other people like to repeat the same prayer each day for nine days. For more detailed information about Novena for the dead prayer, click here.

Rosary for the dead

The rosary is a form of prayer traditionally used by Catholics. It consists of meditations on 15 mysteries, divided into three sets called five decades each, with the Lord's Prayer recited between them. It is a powerful praying tool for the souls in purgatory in order to send them relief.


When someone we love dies, it’s natural to feel a sense of despair. In this difficult time, prayer is not just something that will comfort you and give you strength. It can also shorten their time in Purgatory! This article has provided you with several prayers that can be used for someone who passed away. No matter what type of prayer you say, know that they are always heard by God! It is an important and holy action to pray for the deceased. You may also want to consider including these prayers in your funeral service, either before it starts or after it ends - either would be appropriate. I hope you found this blog post helpful and you will be able to use it for yourself or share it with friends and members of your family who are mourning the loss of a loved one. God bless you.

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