Falling into Grace
Fall is well underway here in Santa Rosa and at Regina Pacis Convent as the golden leaves make quite a contrast with the scattered, blooming flowers. The season began with a postulant project: pumpkin carving - Catholic style. We may be a bit biased, but we think these were the finest carved pumpkins in town! (Who wouldn't want a monstrance with accentuating candelabra for table or fireplace decor?)
As the seasons change (both liturgical and weather), Our Lady's mantle also receives a new arrangement, matching the beautiful scenery Our Lord provides in nature. Leaves are beginning to change to their beautiful shades of red, orange, and yellow as they fall (a bit more rapidly now) and cover the ground in the splendor of fall shades. Even so, in Santa Rosa, there are still a few rose blossoms come mid-November. It's not Santa Rosa without at least one rose.
Our religious community helps the sisters keep present the reality of death and our dear faithful departed by means of two practices: 1) the end of meal prayer and 2) the monthly Requiem Mass.
At the end of every meal, the sisters pray together, "We give Thee thanks, Almighty God, for all Thy benefits, who livest and reignest forever and ever. And may the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen." This prayer serves as the community's daily prayer for those souls in purgatory in need of relief.
But it is Christ Himself - through the alter Christus, the priest - who offers Himself again to the Father, pleading for the soul whom He loves so immensely and tenderly. Praise to the Divine Heart that wrought our salvation!
Through the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass we see death as not the end, but rather the beginning - the beginning of a life of eternity with God. But the holy souls rely on us to help get them there; it is our responsibility to pray for the dead. So then, let us join together in prayer the rest of this November (and with daily remembrance thereafter) for the holy souls, that this day they may be with God in paradise.
Listed below are the links for Day 17 - Day 23 of the daily prayers for the dead:
Day 17 | Day 18 | Day 19 | Day 20 | Day 21 | Day 22 | Day 23