Prayers for our Dead
On the first Friday of every month I begin a Novena for ancestral spirits. Anyone may request that I include their ancestors in this work but as I pray the names of each family group several times during each of the nine days, I must limit the number of participants to keep it from becoming beyond the scope of what one person can do.
Each month it will be first come, first served. If you wish, you can send me photos of your ancestors by email attachment. I place a bulletin board on the wall behind the altar and I hang the photographs there. I sometimes photograph my altars before or after prayer work and these photos might be shared on this blog. If you AREN’T ok with your ancestor’s photos being online then please don’t send any.
There’s little point in participating in this work if you aren’t actively seeking connection with your ancestors. If they were Catholic, they will especially appreciate this gesture as these practices were important to the elders back when I was a girl and even more so before then.
The altar is set up with flowers, candles, antique jewelry and sometimes vintage household items, etc. I always include an empty picture frame to represent those ancestors who are unknown to us right now.
I offer special prayers for those who did not make the best choices here and died with regret. I do the same for people who lived or died tragically. I offer love and acceptance to those who may not have received that in life.
During each of the nine days, I do at least one good deed per day in the ancestors’ honor and highly suggest that you do the same. It should improve your connection to them beyond your expectations.
November is a special month to honor the dead and I do a more elaborate vigil at that time. I’ll post about this when the time comes.
Other work: I will sometimes do a Novena or other devotional work to honor a particular Saint or to express my gratitude for their help. I will also offer, on occasion, healing, road opening or prosperity Novenas that will be open to the participation of others.
Watch for notices about this in the blog posts. I will try to give a week’s notice when a prayer vigil will begin and provide a second reminder the day before.