14 November, Requiem Mass for All the Departed Who Did Battle Under the Rule of Saint Benedict

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It is a cherished monastic tradition to pray for the dead. Cistercians, in particular, have the custom of praying an entire Psalter (all 150 Psalms) for the dead, concluding each psalm with the verse, "Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them."

Today's Mass will be offered for all the departed who soldiered under the Rule of Saint Benedict. The Christian life is marked by spiritual combat. "For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiitual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places" (Eph 6:12). The monk, the nun, or the oblate living in the world engages in spiritual combat by making use of the seventy–four tools of good works enumerated in Chapter Four of the Rule of Saint Benedict.

After death, the veterans of spiritual combat are not abandoned by their monastic family. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, psalmody, and the prayer of the Rosary hasten their purification and obtain a speedy deliverance into "the land of the living" where the light of glory shines from the Face of Christ.


Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord,
and let the radiance of your light shine forever upon them (cf. 2 Es 2:35).
V. To you our praise is due in Zion, O God.
To you we pay our vows, you who hear our prayer;
to you all flesh will come (Ps 64:2-3).


O God, giver of pardon and lover of humankind,
we beseech your mercy
that through the intercession of blessed Mary ever-virgin,
and of all your saints,
our brothers and sisters, relatives and benefactors
who have passed out of this life,
may be admitted into the fellowship of everlasting bliss.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever.


For the Church, the mystical body of Christ;
that knit together in one communion,
she may proclaim with one voice the resurrection of her Head,
and the sure and certain hope of all his members,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For all the faithful departed;
that having received the light of Christ in holy Baptism,
they may pass through the gates of death
into the fullness of his radiance,
and fix their gaze forever upon the splendour of his Face,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For the leaders of nations;
that, delivered from temptations to greed and the abuse of power,
they may look to God for salvation and peace,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For those who mourn the death of loved ones;
for the abandoned elderly;
and for the lonely, the sick, and the dying;
that they may lift their eyes to the Face of the crucified and risen Christ
and in him find a hope that cannot disappoint,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For all of us assembled here;
that, following the teaching of Saint Benedict,
we may yearn for eternal life with all possible spiritual desire,
and find in the Eucharist the antidote for death,
and the food that makes us live forever in Jesus Christ,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.


Lord God of mercies,
grant to the souls of all thy servants
a place of cool repose,
the blessedness of quiet,
and the brightness of light.
Through Christ our Lord.


Lord Jesus Christ, King of glory,
deliver the souls of all the faithful departed from the pains of hell
and from the bottomless pit.
Save them from the lion’s jaws;
let them not be engulfed in hell
nor swallowed up in darkness.
Let Saint Michael the standard–bearer
bring them into that holy light which thou didst of old
promise to Abraham and his posterity.
V. Lord, in praise of thee we offer sacrifice and prayer;
accept them for the good of those souls
whom we call to mind this day.
Lord, make them pass from death to life,
which thou didst of old
promise to Abraham and his posterity.


Almighty and merciful God,
by this sacrifice, cleanse in the Blood of Christ, we beseech you,
your departed servants from all their sins;
and having washed them in the water of baptism,
purify them unceasingly with the pardon of your lovingkindness.
Through Christ our Lord.


It is truly right and just, our duty and our salvation,
always and everywhere to give you thanks,
Lord, holy Father, almighty and eternal God,
through Christ our Lord.

In him there has dawned for us
the hope of a blessed resurrection,
so that those who are saddened by the certainty of dying,
may be consoled by the promise of the immortality to come.

The life of those who are faithful to you, Lord,
is but changed, not ended;
and when their earthly dwelling place decays,
an eternal home is made ready in heaven.

Therefore with Angels and Archangels,
with Thrones and Dominations,
and with all the hosts of heaven,
we sing a hymn to your glory as we ceaselessly proclaim:


GR and MR
May light eternal shine upon them, O Lord,
with your saints forever, for you are merciful (cf. 2 Es 2:35).


Having partaken of the sacrament of your only-begotten Son
who for us was sacrificed and rose in glory,
we humbly implore you, Lord, for your departed servants;
that purified by the paschal mysteries,
they may rejoice in the gift of the resurrection to come.
Through Christ our Lord.


May the peace of God,
which is beyond all understanding,
keep your hearts and minds
in the knowledge and love of God
and of his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.
R. Amen.

And may the blessing of Almighty God,
the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
descend upon you and remain with you forever.
R. Amen.

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About Dom Mark

Dom Mark Daniel Kirby is Conventual Prior of Silverstream Priory in Stamullen, County Meath, Ireland. The ecclesial mandate of his Benedictine community is the adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar in a spirit of reparation, and in intercession for the sanctification of priests.

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