|Vision of heaven, the New Jerusalem|
In Western Christian theology, the day commemorates all those who have attained the beatific vision in Heaven. It is a national holiday in many historically Catholic countries. In the Catholic Church and many Anglican churches, the next day specifically commemorates the departed faithful who have not yet been purified and reached heaven.
|All Saints Day Mass|
|Children dressed as their favorite Saint|
|Souls in Purgatory Angels assisting them through the Graces of Mary Mother of God|
All Soul's Night Irish Folklore
|Souls of the Dead wandering on All Soul's Night|
There is a Mexican saying that we die three deaths:
"Sweet is the consolation of the dying man, who, conscious of imperfection, believes that there are others to make intercession for him, when his own time for merit has expired; soothing to the afflicted survivors the thought that they possess powerful means of relieving their friend.
In the first moments of grief, this sentiment will often overpower religious prejudice, cast down the unbeliever on his knees beside the remains of his friend and snatch from him an unconscious prayer for rest; it is an impulse of nature which for the moment, aided by the analogies of revealed truth, seizes at once upon this consoling belief. But it is only a flitting and melancholy light, while the Catholic feeling, cheering though with solemn dimness, resembles the unfailing lamp, which the piety of the ancients is said to have hung before the sepulchres of their dead."
"And making a gathering, [Judas] sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection,
(For if he had not hoped that they that were slain should rise again, it would have seemed superfluous and vain to pray for the dead,)
And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them. It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins."
|Book of Maccabees 12: 43-46|
Between Noon of November 1 and Midnight tonight, a person who has been to confession and Communion can gain a plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions, for the poor souls each time he visits a church or public oratory and recites the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Glory be to the Father six times. This is a special exception to the ordinary law of the Church according to which a plenary indulgence for the same work can be gained only once a day. Because of this, some of the customs described below may be begun on All Saints Day.
Also, the faithful who, during the period of eight days from All Saints Day, visit a cemetery and pray for the dead may gain a plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions, on each day of the Octave, applicable only to the dead.
Eternal rest grant unto him/her (them), O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon him/her (them). May he/she (they) rest in peace. Amen.
Réquiem ætérnam dona ei (eis) Dómine; et lux perpétua lúceat ei (eis). Requiéscat (Requiéscant) in pace. Amen.
And it happened on a day, that for his diligent service and his reward, the priest gave to him a holy loaf. And he weeping, answered: Father, wherefore givest thou me this thing? I may not eat it for it is holy. I was sometime lord of this place, but after my death, I was deputed for to serve here for my sins, but I pray thee that thou wilt offer this bread unto Almighty God for my sins, and know thou for certain that thy prayer shall be heard, and when then thou shalt come to wash thee, thou shalt not find me. And then this priest offered a week entire sacrifice to God for him, and when he came again he found him not."