Praised be Jesus Christ! During this month of November, we especially remember the Poor Souls in Purgatory. In a special way, we remember our deceased family members, friends, relatives, and benefactors. On November 2nd—All Souls Day—the Church prays for all who, in the purifying suffering of Purgatory, await the day they will join in heavenly glory. The Mass has always been the principal means by which the Church fulfills the great responsibility of charity toward the dead. Death cannot break the bonds of the Body of Christ.
During this month of November, I encourage everyone to pray for their deceased family members, friends, relatives, and benefactors. In a special way, I encourage everyone to visit a cemetery and offer prayers. During the time of November 1st through November 8th, the Christian faithful who devoutly visit a cemetery and pray, if only mentally, for the dead can obtain a plenary indulgence applicable for the dead only under the usual conditions. Outside of this period, the indulgence is partial.
We should also pray the prayer Requiem aeternam often, especially during the month of November. A partial indulgence, applicable only to the souls in purgatory, is attached to this prayer. The prayer is simple: Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen. There is also the prayer Retribuere dignare for benefactors that has a partial indulgence attached to it: Reward those who have been good to us for the sake of your name, O Lord, and give them eternal life. Amen.
As I mentioned, the Mass has always been the principal means by which the Church fulfills the great responsibility of charity toward the dead. I know many of you schedule Masses to be said for the repose of the souls of your deceased family members and friends. What a wonderful way to pray for the dead. In our prayers, rosaries, and remembrances, let us always pray for those who have gone before us: may they rest in peace!