Although it is part of the natural cycle of all living beings, the death It is usually a very hard blow, which unleashes feelings of great sadness, desolation and anguish. The finitude of life is proof that we are exposed to the rigors of destiny.
The time to bury the dead is also the time to give comfort to the living, close friends of those who leave this world in the physical sense, although not in the spiritual one. To mitigate pain and grief, man needs remember and honor to the person leaving.
Traditions of cult of the dead
Almost all cultures and religions have followed guidelines that marked the way in which it should be dismiss the deceased, even from very ancient times. Very old pre-Columbian civilizations such as the Aztec, the Inca or the Mayan have also left traces of their mortuary traditions.
In the big monotheistic religions there are traditional funeral prayers, which are said on the occasion of wakes, burials and visits to the cemetery. They pray for the entry of those who have gone to heaven and for the repose of their soul in Paradise, where God welcomes kind souls into eternal rest. Sometimes the funeral oration is pronounced by a religious official, other times the mourners themselves do it in conjunction with some religious authority.
Examples of funeral prayers
Twelve funeral prayers are given below, as an example:
- Lord, we entrust to you the soul of your servant … [aquí se menciona el nombre del difunto] and we beg you, Christ Jesus, Savior of the world, not to deny her entry into the lap of your patriarchs, since for her you mercifully descended from heaven to earth. Acknowledge her, Lord, as your creature; not created by strange gods, but by you, the only living and true God, because there is no other God besides you or anyone who produces your works. Fill her soul with joy, Lord, in your presence and do not remember her past sins or the excesses to which the impetus or ardor of lust led her. Because, although he has sinned, he never denied the Father, nor the Son, nor the Holy Spirit; Rather, he believed, he was zealous for the honor of God, and he faithfully worshiped the God who made everything.
- Oh good Jesus! The pain and suffering of others always touched your heart. Look with pity on the souls of my dear relatives in Purgatory. Hear my cry of compassion for them and make those whom you separated from our homes and hearts soon enjoy eternal rest in the home of your love in heaven.
- O God, Creator and Redeemer of all the faithful, grant to the souls of your servants and handmaids the remission of all their sins, so that through the humble supplications of the Church, they may obtain the forgiveness they have always desired; through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
- Oh Jesus, the only consolation in the eternal hours of pain, the only supportive consolation in the immense emptiness that death causes among loved ones! You, Lord, whom the heavens, the earth and the men saw crying in sad days; You, loving Father, also have compassion on our tears.
- O God, who commanded us to honor our father and mother, be gracious and merciful to their souls; forgive them their sins and make one day I can see them in the joy of eternal light. Amen.
- O God who grants forgiveness of sins and wants the salvation of men, we implore your clemency on behalf of all our brothers, relatives and benefactors who left this world, so that, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary and of all You Saints, make them come to participate in eternal bliss; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
- In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen. Brothers, let us ask God for forgiveness for our sins and for the faults of our deceased brother / sister … [aquí se menciona el nombre del difunto]. I confess before Almighty God and before you brothers that I have sinned much in thought, word, deed or omission. Because of me, because of me, because of my great fault, that is why I ask Holy Mary, always the Virgin, the Angels, the Saints and you brothers to intercede for me before God our Lord. Amen. [Todos los presentes]. let’s pray [Funcionario religioso o guía]. Lord Jesus Christ, You remained three days in the grave, thus giving every grave a character of waiting in the hope of the resurrection. Grant your servant to rest in the peace of this sepulcher until you, the resurrection and life of men, resurrect him and lead him to contemplate the light of your face. You who live and reign forever and ever. Amen [Todos los presentes].
- I prostrate myself on this earth where the mortal remains of my dear parents, relatives, friends, and all my brothers in faith who have preceded me on the path of eternity rest. But what can I do for them? Oh divine Jesus, who, suffering and dying for our love, bought us eternal life with the price of your blood; I know that you live and hear my prayers and that the grace of your redemption is very copious. Forgive, then, oh merciful God, the souls of these my beloved departed, free them from all the pains and all the tribulations, and welcome them into the bosom of your Goodness and in the joyful company of your Angels and Saints so that, free from all pain and all anguish, praise you, rejoice and reign with you in the Paradise of your glory for all the centuries of the centuries. Amen.
- Do, O almighty God, that the soul of your servant (or servant) who has passed from this age to the next, purified with these sacrifices and free from sins, obtain forgiveness and eternal rest. Amen. I put my hope in You, Lord, and I trust your word. From the depths I invoke you, Lord; listen to my voice, let your ears be attentive to the cry of my prayer. I put my hope. If you keep accounts of the faults, who will be able to subsist? But You forgive, Lord: I fear and hope.
- Eternal Father, I offer you the Most Precious Blood of Your Divine Son, Jesus Christ, in union with all the Masses that are celebrated throughout the world on this day, for all the Blessed Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the universal Church, by those in my house and in my family.
- May the rise of the road find you. May the wind always blow behind your back. May the sun shine warm on your face. May the rain fall gently on your fields and until we meet again, may the Lord keep you in the palm of His hand (Irish funeral prayer).
- Oh great Nzambi, what you have done is good, but you have brought us great sadness with death. You should have planned it so that we were not subject to death. O Nzambi, we are afflicted with great sadness (Congo’s funeral prayer).