Quick Question For Orthodox

I am not sure where to post this question? At any rate, I want to have a mass said for a man who died recently, I know he and his family are orthodox but I just wanted to name sure that was okay. I am not familiar with the religion but from what I heard, it is similar to Catholics. Also, would it be okay to have the mass said at a catholic church or should it be orthodox? Thanks

Was this person Eastern Orthodox or Catholic Orthodox…?

I’ll just post from what I know about Eastern Orthodox ~

As I have observed from our Church, Memorial services are held on:

40th day after death
1 year anniversary of death

And then there are others who:

3rd day after death
9th day
40 days
1 year
and then each and every year.

At all of these memorials koliva, (wheat berry boiled, drained & rinsed, mixed with sugar, nuts, cinnamon, sesame seeds… etc… etc… ) is made as an offering.

Here is a link if you want to read more about it:


Thanks! No, not catholic orthodox. But it sounds like having a mass said would still be okay, from what I read.

His name should be given to an Orthodox Church, that he might be placed into the list of the deceased for commemoration. Did he receive an Orthodox burial?

I don’t know the man who died personally. His daughter is a neighbor that I have spoken to several times. I just wanted to do something nice for her and thought a mass would a good idea as long as I wasn’t breaking any “rules” in the orthodox religion.

I would be more concerned with you potentially breaking the rules of your church. Are masses for the intention of those who were not Roman Catholics permitted? Also, we are a bit different in that we do not typically offer the liturgy for specific intentions (the names of the living and dead instead are commemorated at specific points in the liturgy).

Traditionally, from the Orthodox perspective, joint prayer with non-Orthodox Christians is frowned upon, since it is forbidden in the ancient canons, though for pastoral reasons, those canons in modern times here in the diaspora are often dispensed through oikonomia. I really have no idea how permissible this would be, as it would technically be left to the bishop’s discretion.

I don’t see any harm in have a Mass for him. I don’t think you need to worry that the family would be offended. Even if though Orthodox don’t agree with the Catholic Church re: the immediate after-life, I think the family will see your intent behind the gesture as very kind and loving.

I agree with 1Tim. If I heard someone had a mass said for me, I would be grateful. I know of Catholics who buy Mass cards (or pay for a Mass) for non-Catholics - my mother received such a card when she had breast cancer. It’s a nice gesture.

Funeral masses can only be offered for Catholics, but a mass intention can be offered for anyone living or dead regardless of their religion. We can, after all, pray for anyone and everyone. A mass intention is not a liturgical act per se - it does not in any way change the liturgy - it is just an ordinary mass during which time the priest offers the mass as a prayer for an individual or group of individuals. Most of my family is Protestant. When a Protestant relative dies, I obviously cannot have a funeral mass said for them, but I do typically ask a priest to offer one of his normal masses for the intent of that relative.

Thank you for writing this. In Orthodoxy, I’m rather certain that we can only commemorate those who are part of the faithful during the commemorations said during the liturgy of the faithful, which is why I was unsure. In that case, I guess it probably would not be a problem.

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