Do You Pray for the Dead?

Do you pray for the dead?  Do you pray for the souls in purgatory?  November is the month we set aside for the prayers for the dead, but it's a subject that periodically comes up and it seems to be a lost practice among some Catholics.

I pray for the repose of my mother’s soul everyday — and for all of the holy souls. I feel like it is the last and most important deed a daughter can do for her mother. - Lori Hadacek Chaplin

After reading Chaplin's article in the National Catholic Register, I was faced with my own duty as a daughter.  Or maybe I should say, my lack of duty.

I rarely pray for my mother.  We were estranged for ten years.  I tried to make peace with her before I got married, but it's hard to make peace with a person who won't change.  For her, I was just another target she could gleefully and verbally abuse.

After my father died, I did take care of her and after her death, I thought my duty as a daughter was over until I read Chaplin's article.

My mother was a fallen away Catholic and she fell as far from the Church as one can get.  Her last stroke finally silenced her, so I'll never know how she actually felt about her faith.

I always thought that taking care of my mother was the hardest thing I'll ever have to do, but in the coldness at the bottom of my heart, it's praying for her.

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