The consultor of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Aurelio Garcia Macias, has invited Catholics to pray for their deceased loved ones and “hope for their resurrection.”
“If Christ has died and risen, we who are united to Christ through baptism experience death, but we await the resurrection. This is the great Christian message of these days,” he told Europa Press.
He noted that the venerable Christian tradition of visiting cemeteries still exists in countries such as Spain, where millions go to place flowers at the tombs of deceased family members and friends.
Garcia Macias encouraged Catholics to remember the faithfully departed and to pray for them as “a gesture of charity for our brethren no longer with us.” Praying for them, placing flowers at their tombs and praying for their eternal repose is proof of our love for them. “We pray for them and with them, because we are all part of the earthly and heavenly Church,” he said.
He went on to explain that there needs to be a distinction between Nov. 1, All Saints' Day, and Nov. 2, All Souls' Day. The Solemnity of All Saints celebrates all those who are in heaven and who followed Christ to the end. It is a day of “joy and happiness” symbolized in the liturgical color of white.
All Souls' Day commemorates all the baptized in Christ and members of the Church who have died, therefore it is a day of “austerity and prayer” to remember our deceased loved ones, he said.