All Souls’ Day

November 2

THE Church teaches us that the souls of the just who have left this world soiled with the stain of venial sin remain for a time in a place of expiation, where they suffer such punishment as may be due to their offences. It is a matter of faith that these suffering souls are relieved by the intercession of the Saints in heaven and by the prayers of the faithful upon earth. To pray for the dead is, then, both an act of charity and of piety. We read in Holy Scripture: "It is a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins." And when Our Lord inspired St. Odilo, Abbot of Cluny, towards the close of the tenth century, to establish in his Order a general commemoration of all the faithful departed, it was soon adopted by the whole Western Church, and has been continued unceasingly to our day. Let us, then, ever bear in mind the dead and offer up our prayers for them. By showing this mercy to the suffering souls in purgatory, we shall be particularly entitled to be treated with mercy at our departure from this world, and to share more abundantly in the general suffrages of the Church, continually offered for all who have slept in Christ.

Lives Of The Saints By Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. Edition

Prayers and Reading for Today’s MASS

All Souls’s Day

The First Mass for All Souls’ Day

Introit • 4, Esdr. 2, 34, 35

Eternal rest give to them, O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon them. Ps. 64, 2, 3. A hymn, O God, becometh Thee in Sion; and a vow shall be paid to Thee in Jerusalem: O Lord, hear my prayer; all flesh shall come to Thee. Eternal rest.

Collect (Prayer)

O God, the creator and redeemer of all the faithful, grant to the souls of Thy servants and handmaids the remission of all their sins, that they may obtain by loving prayers the forgiveness which they have always desired. Who levest.

Epistle • 1 Cor. 15, 51-27

Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians.

[Christ's resurrection and ours. The manner of our resurrection.]

Brethren, Behold, I tell you a mystery. We shall all indeed rise again: but we shall not all be changed. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall rise again incorruptible: and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption; and this mortal must put on immortality. And when this mortal hath put on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy victory? O death, where is thy sting?
Now the sting of death is sin: and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who hath given us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.


Gradual • 4 Esdr. 34, 35

Eternal rest give to them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. Ps. 111, 7. The just shall be in everlasting remembrance; he shall not fear the evil hearing.

Gospel • John 5, 25-29

Continuation of the Holy Gospel According to St. John. 

[Christ warns us against hypocrisy, the fear of the world and covetousness. He admonishes all to watch.]

At that time, Jesus said to the multitudes of the Jews, Amen, amen I say unto you, that the hour cometh, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and they that hear shall live. For as the Father hath life in himself, so he hath given the Son also to have life in himself: And he hath given him power to do judgment, because he is the Son of man. Wonder not at this; for the hour cometh, wherein all that are in the graves shall hear the voice of the Son of God. And they that have done good things, shall come forth unto the resurrection of life; but they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of judgment.


O Lord Jesus Christ, King of glory, deliver the souls of all the faithful departed from the pains of hell and from the deep pit; deliver them from the lion’s mouth, that hell engulf them not, nor they fall into darkness, but let Michael, the holy standard-bearer, bring them into the holy light which Thou once didst promise to Abraham and his seed. We offer Thee, O Lord, sacrifices and prayers of praise; do Thou accept them for those souls whom we this day commemorate; grant them, O Lord, to pass from death to the life which Thou once didst promise to Abraham and his seed.


Mercifully look down, we beseech Thee, O Lord, upon the sacrifice which we offer Thee for the souls of Thy servants and handmaids, that, to those on who Thou didst confer the merit of Christian faith, Thou mayst also grant its reward. Through our Lord.

Communion • 4, Esdr. 35, 34

May light eternal shine upon them, O Lord, with Thy saints forever, for Thou art kind. Grant them everlasting rest, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them, with Thy saints.


May the payer of Thy suppliants profit the souls of Thy servants and handmaids, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that Thou mayst free them from all sins and make them sharers in Thy redemption. Who livest.