Any reader who spends more than about five minutes reading this blog will realize my attachment to the Order of Friars Preachers. It’s about as obvious as their all-white habit. But, it seems that somehow, the more I learn about the Order, the more interesting it is.
One of my more favorite blogs (Breviarium S.O.P. – who mixes two of my loves, Catholic tradition AND the Order) has a post discussing the commemoration that is made on February 6th in the (traditional) calendar of the Order, the Anniversary of Our Deceased Parents.
It is a sad fact of life today, that attending a Roman Catholic funeral can be as course of tremendous frustration and sadness. Against the teaching of the Church, the priest often canonizes the recently deceased during the homily, and there is never an admonition to pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased. The presumption is that, they lived a good life and they are in Heaven now. This is a tragedy of supernatural proportions. How many souls suffer the fires of Purgatory, for unnecessarily long periods of time, due to a lack of sufferages for them? And how much more of a tragedy is it when children, due to poor catechesis and poor homiletics on the part of priests, neglect to help alleviate the suffering of their own parents?
Against this outrage stands the age old tradition of the Dominican Order, to remember the souls of our parents on a special day set aside as an anniversary. This anniversary is included in the oldest extant liturgical calendar of the Order (on February 4)…that of Humbert de Romans which dates from the middle of the 13th Century.
More good information at his site, so go check it out. And, say a prayer for your parents (deceased or living), especially if you’re a cradle Catholic. It is likely that they are the ones who instilled in you your Catholic Faith, an immeasurable gift.
(For a longer discussion on general death-related things, check out this article by a Central Province friar who teaches at the Angelicum).