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James wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • As a Catholic, can you pray to your dead relatives and ask them to pray for you?

James

  { As a Catholic, can you pray to your dead relatives and ask them to pray for you? }

John replied:

Hi, James —

You can pray for the dead and ask the dead to pray for you.

I'd be careful with the expression praying to which many Catholics sloppily use. When we say we are praying to we mean, we are asking them for prayers.

Since the word pray means to ask, it is correct to do this but it is confusing. Many people think of prayer as a form of worship so when we say, we pray to the dead or the saints, it sounds as though we are worshiping them instead of asking for their prayers.

We pray for the dead, because we believe that God continues to purify the (saved) dead, after death.

This doesn't mean they get a second chance to accept Christ after death. It means that those who die in friendship with God, are not always fully sanctified by the time they die. Hence, God finishes that work after death. So we pray for them — just as we do for the living.

John

James replied:

OK,

Thanks!

A relative of mine wanted me to pray for their parents.

James

Mike replied:

Hi, James —

I just wanted to add to what my colleague has said. Another area of confusion can arise when using the phrase praying for the dead. We say this with an earthly, not heavenly, mind set because we are still on our earthly journey (being part of the Church Militant).

In reality, the dead are not dead. They are more alive then any one on Earth whether their self-love is being burned off in Purgatory or they are in Heaven. Jesus said, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life." (John 14:6)

When Catholics refer to the dead, they are using that term, from an earthly, living point of view, seeing those on Earth are obviously not dead.

You said:

  • As a Catholic, can you pray to your dead relatives and ask them to pray for you?

Yes!, but there is no reason why a person who dies with absolutely no self-love on their soul can't go straight to Heaven but it is very hard for many. This is why I started (with my colleague, Brian) my other website dedicated to praying for the Holy Souls in Purgatory.

Our goal is to have Purgatory Prayer Programs started in all fifty states. Our motto:

God's Guest of tomorrow!
Heaven can't wait!

If you are interested in starting your own local prayer program and live in the United States, just e-mail us your postal address and we will sent you our FREE start-up Purgatory Prayer Program.

That said, please provide the courtesy of replying to our e-mails. Some requestors have asked for one and after a program has been put in the mail, we never hear back from them. If you aren't going reply to our e-mails or use it, don't ask for one.

Get your free program here!

Hope this helps,

Mike

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