A month ago my cousin shot himself he had been battling addiction to prescription pain killers for 3 yrs and he gave up and killed himself he was not Catholic or religious I want to pray for him but I’m not sure where non Catholic suicide victims go? Can he merit from my prayers? Is he in hell?
Pray for him. If he is in purgatory, he can definitely merit from your prayers.
If he is in hell, then your prayers can no longer help him. But do not lose hope. You do not know he is there and the Church holds hope that anyone - Catholic or not - who commits suicide is still capable of being saved.
The time between your cousin pulling the trigger and his death is more than enough time for God to speak to his soul and grant the grace and mercy of salvation to him. Do not despair. Keep praying.
I personally very strongly feel that most suicides, through the mercy of God, avoid Hell, but that they get to understand and regret what they have done. God, as shown/expressed in Jesus’ humanity, is always moved by the prayers and works of believers on behalf of others, living or dead,
First of all I am so sorry for your family’s loss. :hug1:Cousins are often our first best friends in life.
Please continue to pray for his soul.
No-one on earth can be certain where he is. Only God knows and if he is in Purgatory your prayers will surely help.
Prayer for People Who Have Committed Suicide
Almighty God, Our Heavenly Father, we understand that Thy sixth commandment, “Thou shalt do no murder,” includes self murder. But in Thy divine mercy, we beg Thy forgiveness especially for (name), who has been so confounded by the pressures of this life that they felt there was no way they could continue. Grant, we beseech Thee, that they be forgiven their terrible sin and accepted into Thy divine providence, and that they may come to understand Thy ways and Thy nature. We ask this in Jesus Christ’s name.
I have found much comfort in praying The Divine Mercy for those who have committed suicide, including non-Catholcs.
Some Catholics will pray for a sign as to whether their loved one still needs these prayers for their souls or not.
I’m sorry for your loss.
A priest once told my class that very few suicides go to hell because of the suicide. They are usually so depressed that they are not responsible. Sounds like your cousin is one of those. I would definitely pray for him.
He may be in hell, he may not. You cannot know for sure. The one thing you CAN know for sure is that if he is not in hell he desperately needs your prayers. We MUST pray for the dead for we can help them pass through purgatory.
I agree with the above posts. It is pointless to speculate as this is/was a matter between the soul and God. While we cannot say that people who commit suicide automatically go to Hell, nor can we say God saves all of these people. What we can say is that suicide does not help one’s state of grace and can easily cause one to go before his Maker ill-prepared. So I’d look after my own soul and avoid such a desperate state of distress.
Yes. I have a list of people I pray for daily - friends & friends of friends - who were not Christian and committed suicide. Sometimes I think I may be the only person praying for them by name.
On this point, the Church does not make a distinction between Catholics and non-Catholics:
from the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
2283 We should not despair of the eternal salvation of persons who have taken their own lives. By ways known to him alone, God can provide the opportunity for salutary repentance. The Church prays for persons who have taken their own lives.
Let us pray for your cousin:
God, lover of souls,
you hold dear what you have made
and spare all things, for they are yours.
Look gently upon your servant, Stillsosola’s cousin,
and by the Blood of the cross
forgive his sins and failings.
Remember the faith of those who mourn
and satisfy their longing for that day
when all will be made new again
in Christ, our risen Lord,
who lives and reigns with you forever and ever.