28th October 2020
The month of November is the month par excellence in which we remember in prayer those who have died. It had been hoped that in November Churches would be able to hold special commemorations of those who died in the past months, especially where family and friends were unable to grieve and mourn due to the pandemic. Sadly that is not yet possible.
The Irish Bishops Conference has asked that we find ways in this November, within what is possible, to remember the dead. Many dioceses are holding prayer service on Sunday afternoon 1 November.
In the Archdiocese of Dublin, I propose that we focus, as is the Catholic tradition, on the Feast of All Souls, Monday 2 November. I will celebrate Mass in the Pro-Cathedral at 10.30 on that morning and after Mass will conduct a short prayer service which will be transmitted on line on the Pro-Cathedral website and will be placed on the diocesan website so that it can be used by parishes at any time during the month of November.
You will find below the text of that prayer service and it might be possible to hold it after the on line Mass in your parish on 2nd November. It is short and does not involve the need for a significant number of people. Of course it can be adapted to local circumstances.
On Saturday, 7th November, I will celebrate the annual Mass for the priests of the diocese or who ministered in the diocese who died during the past year. I hope that many priests will join in prayer on that occasion through the website of the Pro-Cathedral.
With prayerful good wishes
Yours very sincerely
Archbishop of Dublin
Service to dedicate November as a month of Prayer and Remembrance for the dead
and the bereaved Monday 2nd November, 2020
Opening Hymn: Ag Críost an Síol
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Peace be with you. And with your spirit.
Introduction: (vel similis):
Dear friends, one of the greatest signs of love is remembrance. We set this time aside on All Souls Day to remember and pray for our brothers and sisters who have died. We are particularly mindful of those who died during the past eight months from Covid-19 and from other causes. We pray that they have passed from death to life in the company of the Risen Christ, the firstborn from the dead, whose love has overcome all things.
All over this island in our Churches, we are dedicating this month of November to their memory and we commend them to the love and mercy of God.
We pray also for those who mourn the death of a loved one and whose grieving has been all the more difficult on account of pandemic restrictions.
We pray too for our healthcare workers and all who keep essential services going. We pray especially for those who died as a result of their selfless service during the pandemic.
To begin we will light the Paschal Candle,
the symbol of the Risen Christ among us.
In the rawness of grief, in our darkest moments,
may his radiance bring us light and hope.
The Paschal Candle is lit
Let us pray.
Lord of all gentleness and consolation,
surround us with your care,
and comfort us in our sorrow.
It is our certain faith that your Son, Jesus Christ,
who died on the cross, and was buried
was raised from the dead.
Grant, through this mystery,
that all who have gone to their rest in Christ
may share in the glory of his resurrection.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
LITURGY OF THE WORD
A reflection based on Colossians 1: 17b-20
St Paul wrote with great conviction:
“In Christ Jesus all things hold together.”
So when I feel as though things are falling apart
because of the rawness of grief
or I feel guilty because I didn’t remember them today.
Or I wonder: what will happen to all these precious memories
when I forget? I can trust that in Jesus all things hold together.
And I can trust that the love of God,
which has overcome all things, will hold us together again.
PSALM SUNG Psalm 22
R: The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want.
The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want.
Fresh and green are the pastures where he gives me repose.
Near restful waters he leads me
To revive my drooping spirit. R.
He guides me along the right path, he is true to his name.
If I should walk in the valley of darkness no evil would I fear.
You are there with your crook and your staff
With these you give me comfort. R.
You have prepared a banquet for me
In the sight of my foes.
My head you have anointed with oil.
My cup is overflowing. R.
Surely goodness and kindness shall follow me
All the days of my life.
In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell for ever and ever. R.
Blessed are those who mourn, they shall be comforted.
GOSPEL from the Holy Gospel according to John (14:1-6)
Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God still, and trust in me. There are many rooms in my Father’s house; if there were not, I should have told you. I am going now to prepare a place for you, and after I have gone and prepared you a place, I shall return to take you with me; so that where I am you may be too. You know the way to the place I am going.” Thomas said, “Lord, we do not know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one can come to the Father except through me.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
After the Homily a suitable sacred song may be sung
LITANY The following litany is sung or recited.
Lord, have mercy Lord, have mercy
Christ, have mercy Christ, have mercy
Lord, have mercy Lord, have mercy
Holy Mary, Mother of God Pray for them
would a better response be: “Welcome them”?
Saint Michael Pray for them
Saint John the Baptist Pray for them
Saint Joseph Pray for them
Saint Peter Pray for them
Saint Paul Pray for them
Saint Andrew Pray for them
Saint Stephen Pray for them
Saint Anne Pray for them
Saint Teresa Pray for them
Saint Catherine Pray for them
Saint Patrick Pray for them
Saint Brigid Pray for them
Saint Columcille Pray for them
St Laurence O’Toole Pray for them
St Kevin Pray for them
Blessed Margaret Ball Pray for them
Blessed Francis Taylor Pray for them
Blessed Columba Marmion Pray for them
All you holy men and women saints Pray for them
Christ Jesus, pardon all their faults Lord, hear our prayer
Christ Jesus, remember the good they have done
Lord, hear our prayer
Christ Jesus, recognize them as members of your flock
Lord, hear our prayer
Christ Jesus, receive them into eternal life Lord, hear our prayer
Christ Jesus, comfort all those who mourn Lord, hear our prayer
Christ Jesus, breathe peace upon all the bereaved.
Lord, hear our prayer
Christ hear us. Christ graciously hear us.
Lord Jesus, hear our prayer Lord Jesus, hear our prayer
PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION
Intro: Our God is Lord of the living and of the dead.
We are all in God’s hands. With the trusting of faith then,
we present our intentions:
Let us pray for all who have died this past year, whom we remember before the Lord [pause] May the tender mercy of our God grant them unending light and peace. Lord hear us…
Let us pray for those who died without a loved one near them, or with no one to hold their hand. May the communion of Saints rush to meet them. Lord hear us…
We pray for families who, because of COVID restrictions, could not honour their deceased loved ones as fully as they would have liked, who were deprived too of our physical presence and support. May we continue to reach out to them. May the Risen Christ sustain them. Lord hear us…
We pray for all who mourn and grieve and live with the pain and ache of separation. May faces of compassion and listening ears transfigure their burden. May the Holy Spirit be their strength and consolation. Lord hear us…
We pray in thanksgiving for frontline workers who gave wonderful care in very difficult circumstances to the sick and dying and their families. We thank God for the kindness of neighbours and friends. Reward their goodness.
Lord hear us…
We pray for those who have no one to remember them.
May the Lord, who never forgets us, gather them to Himself.
Lord hear us…
We pray for the many who die before their time because of violence, war, hunger and diseases, every day. May the Lord show profound mercy to those who suffer so unjustly, and grant us a hunger for to work for a better future.
Lord hear us…
We pray for ourselves, remembering and praying together this morning, that the love of God will gather us together again in the Father’s House. Lord hear us…
Conclusion: Our true home is in the Father’s house,
let us pray to the Father as Jesus taught us: Our Father…
PRAYER TO OUR LADY FOR LIBERATION FROM THE EPIDEMIC
The prayer is adapted from the prayer Pope Francis prayed during the extraordinary moment of prayer before Saint Peter’s Basilica on 27 March 2020
O Mary, you shine continuously on our journey
as a sign of salvation and hope.
We entrust ourselves to you,
Health of the Sick.
At the foot of the Cross
you participated in Jesus’ pain,
with steadfast faith.
You, Salvation of a Pilgrim People,
know what we need.
We are certain that you will provide,
as you did at Cana of Galilee,
joy and feasting might return
after this moment of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love,
to conform ourselves to the Father’s will
and to do what Jesus tells us:
He who took our sufferings upon Himself,
and bore our sorrows to bring us,
through the Cross,
to the joy of the Resurrection.
We seek refuge under your protection,
O Holy Mother of God.
Do not despise our pleas
– we who are put to the test –
and deliver us from every danger,
O glorious and blessed Virgin.
CONCLUDING RITE The minister says:
Let us pray.
O Lord, we praise and thank you for the gift of our loved ones who have died and whom we remember during this month of November. We are mindful particularly of those who have died these past eight months; those who died from COVID-19, those who died from other natural causes and those who died tragically.
We thank you, compassionate God for walking with us in all the dark moments of our grief and loneliness. Even when we find it hard to see you, we know and trust that you walk beside us, and in the Resurrection of Christ, Your Son, the victory of love in Jesus Our Lord, you give us a reason for living; a reason for hoping. Lord, continue to be a light for us, giving us direction and courage in this difficult time.
May we live our lives treasuring the memories of those precious ones we have known and loved. We trust Lord that you are treasuring them with us. Help us, Lord, to bring light and hope to others.
We make this our prayer through Christ our Lord, Amen.
The minister adds:
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.
And let perpetual light shine upon them.
May they rest in peace. Amen
May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen
The Lord be with you.
And with your spirit.
May the peace of God,
which is beyond all understanding,
keep your hearts and minds
in the knowledge and love of God
and of his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.
Then he blesses all present.
And may almighty God bless you all,
the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
Salve Regina to finish
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