26. Praying for the Dead

Catholic Position

¶958 Communion with the dead. “In full consciousness of this communion
of the whole Mystical Body of Jesus Christ, the Church in its pilgrim
members, from the very earliest days of the Christian religion, has
honored with great respect the memory of the dead; and ‘because it is a
holy and a wholesome thought to pray for the dead that they may be
loosed from their sins’ she offers her suffrages for them.” Our prayer
for them is capable not only of helping them, but also of making their
intercession for us effective.

Scripture Says

Matthew 28:18
18  And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Ephesians 1:20-22
20  Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,
21  Far above all principality, and power, and might, and
dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but
also in that which is to come:
22  And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,


Hebrews 7:25
25  Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that
come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for
them.

Commentary

  • Jesus is not powerless to help us without the aid of others.
  • Your prayers cannot loosen the dead from their sins–only Jesus can take away sins.