A Season of Joy, A Season of Sorrow

In this season of Easter Joy, as we celebrate the victory over death through Jesus’ resurrection, I am writing this post in particular for many who are living this season of joy, caught in a personal season of sorrow because of the loss of a loved one. These losses vary, and for those left behind – even in faith in the resurrection – struggle with the sense of loss. Some are grieving for those whose lives were taken without warning due to natural disasters; others are grieving for a loved one who succumbed  to disease. For yet others, they are saying goodbye to their elderly family member whose time had come. And perhaps the most difficult, are those suffering from the loss of a child or a young person.

There is one family and their friends that are suffering tremendously over the death of a young man – their son and their friend. I have promised to keep them in my prayers. This post is directed to them in particular, just to copy down some prayers that I hope will help to console them.

May all of us pray in solidarity with our brothers and sisters who are living a season of sorrow. And hopefully, through our prayers, may they be strengthened so to hope again.

Mary, Comforter of the Afflicted, Pray for us.

Jesus Help Me

Jesus, help me, your servant,
whom you redemed by your precious blood:

In every need let me come to you with humble trust, saying,
Jesus, help me.

In all my doubts, perplexities, and temptations,
Jesus, help me.

In hours of loneliness, weariness, and trial,
Jesus, help me.

In the failure of my plans and hopes,
Jesus, help me.

In disappointments, troubles, and sorrows,
Jesus, help me.

When I throw myself on your tender love as Father and Savior,
Jesus, help me.

When I feel impatient and my cross is heavy,
Jesus, help me.

When I am ill and my head and hands cannot do their work,
Jesus, help me.

Always, always, in joys or sorrows, in falls and shortcomings,
Jesus, help me.

A Prayer for Help

Have mercy, O Lord, on me in my futility.
Please grant me your wisdom
and fill me with your strength;
for I am a sinner,
weak in body,
wounded in spirit,
deficient in understanding.

– Anonymous

Cast all Care on God Who Cares for You

Come, heavy souls, oppressed that are
with doubts, and fears, and carking care.
Lay all your burdens down, and see
Where’s One that carried once a tree
Upon his back, and, which is more,
A heavier weight, your sins, He bore.
Think then how easily He can
Your sorrows bear that’s God and Man;
Think too how willing He’s to take
Your care upon Him, Who for your sake
Sweat bloody drops, prayed, fasted, cried,
Was bound, scourged, mocked, and crucified,
He that so much for you did do,
Will do yet more, and care for you.

– Thomas Washbourne (1606-1687)

A Prayer in Special Time of Need

Mary, Loving Mother of Consolation, I turn to you now in this time of need. I come to you confused and fearful, anxious as a little child.

I know you really are my Mother. You see me with eyes filled with love and understanding. Touch me through your prayers and hold me in your love, that I might continue strong and unafraid in these days of difficulty and hurt.

Gentle Mother, I now confide to you my greatest need (pause and reflect). Please pray that the loving will of Our Father may always come first in my heart and in my mind.

Help me to reflect on the needs in your own life, Mary, the days when you, too, knew concern, fear, loneliness and grief. You always turned to Our Father and gave yourself to Him completely. You knew His love and showed us how to live in it.

When I remember the love of your Blessed Son for me, I am less afraid. When I think of you I can smile. Pray for me, Mary. Guide me always in your love, and lead me to your Son, Jesus. Amen.

Mary, Consoler of the Afflicted, Pray for us.

A Prayer for the Deceased

Mary, Mother of Consolation, be with me as I pray for the souls of those departed from this life. Please join your prayers with mine as I remember my dear departed (pause and reflect). In your wonderful love, please pray that they may behold Our Loving Father in heaven.

Most kind and gentle Mother, who knew the loss of your husband and only Son, help me to understand the passing of my loved ones as a new birth into a more complete life with Our Heavenly Father. Amen.


Feel free to add other prayers in the comments. Thank you for joining me in prayer. God bless!


All Souls Day

Today, the Church remembers all those who have gone to their rest, and She prays the Divine Office for the Dead. The opening hymn for today’s prayers is the Dies Irae – Day of Wrath – which tells of the standing before the King of Mercy on judgment day.

A key thought for the day is, God’s mercy. Saint Braulio, Bishop, wrote:

“O death! You separate those who are joined to each other in marriage. You harshly and cruelly divide those whom friendship unites. But your power is broken…Your conquerer redeemed us. He handed himself over to wicked men so that he could transform the wicked into persons who were truly dear to Him…focusing our attention upon the glory of our Redeemer there is sufficient hope for our resurrection.”

It is thus, part of the Christian experience to find consolation in the passing of our loved ones. Our here-and-now is our temporary home, and we will see our loved ones again. Until then we pray for the departed souls, that they may be received into heaven. The tradition of praying for the dead is explained:

II Machabees 12: 43-46

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.


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. Here is a simple invocation for the dead, called the “Eternal Rest” prayer:

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.

Latin version:

Réquiem ætérnam dona ei (eis) Dómine; et lux perpétua lúceat ei (eis). Requiéscat (Requiéscant) in pace. Amen.

Catholics also pray this prayer for the dead anytime throughout the year, and whenever they pass a cemetery. Many families pray a Rosary nightly for the dead throughout the Octave of All Saints, replacing the Fatima prayer with the Eternal Rest prayer.


Let us remember, too, those killed in Baghdad Syrian-Catholic cathedral on Sunday.


Today’s readings and homily can be watched here.

Merciful Father,
hear our prayers and console us.
As we renew our faith in your Son,
whom you raised from the dead,
strenghten our hope that all our
departed brothers and sisters
will share in his resurrection,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen