Cemetery Praying

Does anyone else go to the cemetery to pray for the dead ? …especially on the anniversary of their death… I do, and I’ve kinda made a hobby of going to places like that to pray. I like to drive to my church and pray in the parking lot. I like to to to the cemetery to pray. Sure I can pray at home, but that’s boring…

2 Likes

Yes, when I pass a cemetery I say the Eternal Rest prayer. Also if I am in a cemetery I say the prayer. I do not regularly go into cemeteries because most of them are only open during my work hours, and my loved ones are buried in different states and I am usually not near their graves on the dates of their exact deaths. But some churches I visit have cemeteries attached so one has to walk through them to get to Mass, so that makes it easy to pray in the cemetery. Also there is a custom in certain older towns of having beloved parish pastors buried on the church lawns, making a little cemetery there.

You get a partial indulgence applicable only to the Souls in Purgatory for going into a cemetery and praying for the souls of the deceased, except during November 1 through November 8, on which days you can get a plenary indulgence each day under the usual conditions, applicable only to the Souls in Purgatory, for praying for the dead in a cemetery. The last few years I have made sure to go into a cemetery and pray every day on those days to get the plenary indulgence. I try to visit a different cemetery each time and include non-Catholic cemeteries like Jewish, Presbyterian, non-denominational, Episcopalian, Baptist etc.

You also get a partial indulgence, applicable only to the dead, for saying the Eternal Rest prayer.

3 Likes

Yes

8675309

2 Likes

Praying outside the box!

Prayer for the dead, no matter where it is done, is one of the spiritual works of mercy. It can take on a new significance at the cemetery.

Praying at Church - an area priest reminded us that we do not have to wait for adoration. Even if the building is locked, “He’s right on the other side of the wall”

He noted that even 5 minutes spent near the Lord in prayer would be the best minutes of your day.

4 Likes

Yes, my family does that. Sometimes it’s a relative, sometimes, it’s a stranger whose marker we read and it sparked something. (We also weed other people’s grave sites too, because we feel bad that no one else has been there to do it.) We stop at cemeteries we are passing, especially if they have old headstones and statues.

We are all going to go someday, it’s nothing morbid or weird.

3 Likes

What is 8675309 ?

We do go when we can and we do pray for those there.

2 Likes

The title of an old popular song (before your time, whippersnapper) which Denise uses to make her posts be 10 characters as is required to post.

5 Likes

I’ve heard the song I just wondered why she included it in the post

Yes. I visit my husband’s grave regularly, and there are others I knew who are buried there. So I pray for them all while I’m there.

1 Like

Yeah, I just include it so my post meets the minimum number of characters.

4 Likes

I think it’s a very clever idea. :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

I pray the the St. Gertrude Prayer and the Eternal Rest Prayer any time I go to the cemetery.

3 Likes

It’s part of the traditions of my wife’s Church to visit the cemetery at set times.
https://www.holy-trinity.org/liturgics/sokolov-death.html

3 Likes

Jews have the long standing tradition of visiting the gravesite on the anniversary of death. They also light a special votive candle that burns for 24 hours and say a special prayer called the Kaddish for them.

Question? Do Catholics leave a stone or small rock on the tombstone to mark the visit? If you are ever in a Jewish cemetery you will often notice a small pyramid of stones on many headstones. Tradition also has them wash their hands before leaving so you will see faucets located around the entrance and exits. Just curious! Thanks.

2 Likes

What is the purpose of that ? Just curious

1 Like

I use that tradition but I borrowed it from Judaism because I am not fond of flowers in cemeteries.

2 Likes

What, washing hands? I would presume a graveyard is likely ritually unclean in Judaism and its an act of purification when leaving it.

3 Likes

I meant leaving rocks. Sorry. I knew that they dud that. I just don’t know why

I’ve heard more than one explanation. Flowers are forbidden for use in Jewish cemeteries and thus this custom has grown up, I’ve heard it cited as going back to the Bible and also as originally just being a practical measure to allow people to find graves again or to be related to building cairns to protect dead bodies from wild animals digging them up.

2 Likes
DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.