Pray for the dead with the faith and hope of God's mercy.
Unlimited and unsuccessful would be our grief over dying loved ones, if the Lord did not give us eternal life. Our life would be aimless, if it ended in death. What good would it be then from virtue and good works? Then the rightists would be right: "Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we will die." But man was created for immortality, and Christ, with His resurrection, opened the gates of the Kingdom of Heaven, eternal bliss for those who believed in Him and lived righteously. Our earthly life is a preparation for the future life, and this preparation ends with death. People are supposed to die one day, and then the court (Hebrew 9, 27). Then a person leaves all his earthly care; his body disintegrates in order to rise again under the general resurrection.
But his soul continues to live, not ceasing to exist for a single moment. Many of the phenomena of the dead were given to us to know in part what happens to the soul when it leaves the body. When the vision stops with physical eyes, the spiritual vision begins. Often this spiritual vision begins with the dying even before death, and still seeing others and even talking with them, they see what others do not see. But after leaving the body, the soul is among other spirits, good and evil. Usually she reaches out to those who are closer to her in spirit, and if she is in the body, she was influenced by some of them, then she will remain dependent on them and on leaving the body, no matter how disgusting they may be when they meet ...
Some souls after forty days are in a state of anticipation of eternal joy and bliss, and others - in fear of eternal torment, which will fully begin after the Last Judgment. Before that, changes in the state of souls are possible, especially due to the sacrifice of the Bloodless Sacrifice (commemoration at the Liturgy) and other prayers.
The importance of commemoration at the Liturgy can be seen from the following cases. Even before the glorification of St. Theodosius of Chernigov (1896), the hieromonk (the famous elder Alexis from the Holosiivsky skete of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, who died in 1916), re-covered his relics, was tired, sitting at the relics, dozed and saw before him a saint who said to him: "Thank you for your work. I also ask you, when you serve the liturgy, to mention my parents "; and he gave their names (Priest Nikita and Maria). Before the vision, these names were unknown. A few years after the canonization in the monastery, where St. Theodosius was hegumen, his own castle was found, which confirmed these names, confirmed the truth of the vision. "How can you, Saint, ask for my prayers, when you stand before the Celestial Throne and give grace to the people of God?" Asked the hieromonk. "Yes, that's right," replied St. Theodosius, - but the offering at the liturgy is stronger than my prayers. "
Therefore, a memorial service and home prayer for the deceased are useful, as are the good deeds done in their memory by alms or donations to the Church. But commemoration at the Divine Liturgy is especially useful to them. There were many phenomena of the dead and other events confirming how useful the commemoration of the dead. Many who died in repentance, but who could not reveal it during their lifetime, were freed from the torment and received rest. In the Church, prayers are continually prayed for the repose of the departed, and in the kneeling prayer at Vespers on the day of the Descent of the Holy Spirit, there is a special petition "about the uzha in the hell of those held."
Anyone who wishes to show his love for the dead and give them real help can best do so by praying for them, and especially by commemoration at the Liturgy, when the particles seized for the living and the dead are immersed in the Blood of the Lord with the words: "Lord God, sins who are commemorated with blood by their own honesty, with the prayers of your saints. "
We can do nothing better or more for the departed than to pray for them, remembering at the Liturgy. It is always necessary for them, especially in those forty days, when the soul of the deceased follows the path to eternal settlements. The body does not feel anything at all: it does not see the loved ones gathered, does not smell the flowers, does not hear the funerary speeches. But the soul feels the prayers offered for it, is grateful to those who raise them, and is spiritually close to them.
Oh, relatives and friends of the deceased! Do for them what you need and what is in your power, use your money not to decorate the coffin and the grave, but to help the needy, in memory of their deceased relatives, at the Church where prayers are raised for them. Be merciful to the deceased, take care of their soul. The same way lies in front of you, and how we then want to be remembered in prayer! Let us be merciful to the dead ...
Let us take care of those who have gone to another world before us, to do for them all that we can, remembering that blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy: (Matthew 5, 7).
St. John (Maximovich)
Hymns from the requiem in the Parents' Saturday
Thou art God who sitteth to hell, and bound the bands of the bound, and rest the soul of Thy servant.
"You are God, descended into hell and stopped the suffering of the prisoners. Thou, and the soul of Thy servant, rest. "
Alas for me, the yak feat of the soul is parted from the body! alas, then he kicks off, and do not pity me! To angels eyes erectingly idly pray: to the person prostrate, do not seek help. To my beloved, my brethren, thinking about our brief life, are asking for the repose from Christ, and we have great mercy for our souls.
"Oh, how the soul suffers, parting from the body! Oh, how much she sheds tears at this time, and there is no one to regret her! She turns her gaze to the angels, and in vain she wills them; extends his hands to people, and there is no one to help. Therefore, my beloved brethren, having understood the brevity of our life, we ask Christ for the repose of the great mercy who has moved from us, and to his souls. "
Kaya worldly sweetness is sad; Whether glory stands on the earth is immutable; the entire canopy is weak, all the sleepy sitters are charming: in one moment, and this whole death accepts. But in the light, Christ, your face and in the enjoyment of your beauty, you chose him, rest, as a philanthropist.
"What worldly joy is not mingled with grief? What glory stands on earth is not shaken? Everything is negligible than shadows; all deceptive dreams: one moment - and death takes everything away. But, Christ, as a philanthropist, rest in peace the one whom you chose for yourself, in the light of your face and in the enjoyment of your beauty. "
On the Remembrance of the Dead
The living and remaining on earth believe that the departed and the dead are not without existence, but are alive before God. How does the Holy Church teach us about traveling brethren to pray with faith and hope that the prayers that are done about them are useful to them: so it is necessary to understand the prayers of those who departed from this world.
A Christian who knows that everything in the world happens according to the will of a loving God should not indulge in excessive sorrow, nor fall into despair because death takes away from him relatives and friends. Your child or friend has died, and you argue that the child has not died, but given back that the friend did not die, but went on the road and left you a little forward along the same road by which we also need to go.
St. Basil the Great
It is necessary to say these words with love, with love, with those faces whose names you remember ... It is not good before God only to sort out the names of those without the participation and love of the heart ... The great difference between the insensitive list of names and the cordial remembrance of them.
Holy Righteous John of Kronstadt
Do not live by yourself, but try with pure faith and an unconditional correction from your sins to strengthen your hope that for you at your end, prayers will bring your soul joy and help it in achieving eternal peace and blessedness in God, adorned and glorified for ever.
Sainted Philaret, Metropolitan of Moscow
Do not miss the occasions of praying for someone on his petition or on the petition of his relatives, friends, admirers or acquaintances about him. The Lord looks favorably at the prayer of our love and our boldness before Him. In addition, prayer for others is very useful and praying for others: it cleanses the heart, affirms faith and hope for God and stirs up love for God and neighbor.
Holy Righteous John of Kronstadt
Prayers for the dead - in any case - are useful to the worshipers themselves, according to the words of the Psalmist: "And my prayer in the bosom will return to me" (Psalm 34, 13); and the Savior: "Your peace will return to you" (Matthew 10, 13).
Holy Righteous John of Kronstadt
Oh, Lord! Why have You put on us the right and authority of the Apostles to feed Your sheep, perform ordinances, preach to them your word, do your works, did the same by Himself, did not give us the strength to heal this Your servant when she was sick, or resurrect her when she was already dead . According to our earthly concepts and considerations, it would still be so necessary for her husband, to whom was the best friend and helper; for their children, as chicks, sweetly resting under its wing; for their loved ones, who loved her dearly, for friends and acquaintances and, perhaps, more - God knows for whom. "Lord! - Sister Lazareva told the Savior, - if You were here, my brother would not have died " (In. 11, 21, 32).
Why is not the Lord with us? If He were here, then, surely, this servant of God would not have died.
But it seems that miracles in such abundance as obvious proofs of the omnipotence of Togo Whose name or Who they were made were needed only in the beginning - with the first dissemination of our holy faith, since indeed they are only needed for unbelievers or for affirming the weak in faith . Now only some of the miracles are performed by the saints of God. Yes, it is not now and not for us sinners to do such miracles. But they are not needed. It is enough for us and for that great miracle, which once and for all has been accomplished by the Son of God. We mean the miracle of the incarnation of God the Word, His suffering, the death of the cross for us, and the resurrection from the dead. Sin, we would wish for more miracles: only "A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh for a sign" (Matthew 12, 39).
This miracle is greater than itself and must replace all miracles for us. It shed upon our corruptible world our inexhaustible currents of life and immortality so that we live here on earth - we "live for the Lord" with the hope of immortality; and "Are we dying - for the Lord we die" (Rom. 14, 8), or, what is the same, we, dying, are alive for Him: "For with him all are alive" (Luke 20, 38).
Now we do not need to heal any sick people, especially to resurrect our dead; let the sin and nature take from people their obrok - decay and destruction, let our deceased by death pass to the land of immortality. Why, by nature, does the corruptible body weigh for the secondary worldly corruption, when it, like a grain, fell into the ground for regeneration into the body imperishable: "For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality" (1 Cor. 15, 53).
Why should the soul be turned back into her body for the local, vain, transient life? Let her know the other, not futile, blissful, eternal life in heaven. There all of us are waiting for our common Savior, "He is at the right hand of God, He intercedes for us" (Romans 8, 34).
"Our residence is in heaven" (Phil. 3, 20).
This Savior in heaven, about this Kingdom of Heaven, the Savior has commanded us to proclaim to you constantly, brethren. "Go, preach, that the kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Matthew 10, 7). Let us not fear too much of death: it is our guide to the Kingdom of Glory.
Let us not mourn a great deal about the dead, "Like others who do not have hope" (1 Thess. 4, 13).
And we will each in our rank, rank and state prepare ourselves for the country of the living, preparing here for ourselves a supply of good deeds for which we are created. Let the deceased rest till the joyful morning of the resurrection. What would she have survived more here on earth? And to survive, to earn here one thing is necessary - the Kingdom of Heaven. That's why we think that the Lord, who does not want death to a sinner, "But that a sinner should turn ... and he was alive" (Ezekiel 33, 11) called her in good time from our sinful land, and the deceased is put in a coffin, "How do the sheaves of wheat fit in their time" (Job 5, 26).
Rest to her Heavenly Father in the heavens, which he very much and will be more than sufficient for all human virtues.
Holy Righteous John of Kronstadt