All Souls

All Souls day, as my Episcopalian friends tell me, is celebrated today.  The souls of those who have died are remembered. Being a lifelong Presbyterian I used to be wary of praying for the deceased – it seemed somehow to be akin to ancestor worship. As the years have gone by I have been less concerned about what others might think of me. Thus I allow my thoughts and feelings full rein. It is a huge comfort to be able to pray for loved ones who have passed on.

Throughout my life I have felt a strong attachment to my Scots granny;  she was just like a gran should be, always ready to give me attention and always supportive.  (Even though she lived 400 miles away from me.) I try to be like her for my own grandies, and I try to use some of her wise old sayings and keep them alive for future generations.  It is sad that Presbies have been denied the comfort of All Souls…….  so I institute it herein for my Gran Thomson.  (She would probably have been horrified, then she would remember it is me praying for her and she would be ok!)

B2013 Granyoung


B2013 Fredagran

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3 Responses to All Souls

  1. friko says:

    All Souls was a big thing for us Catholics; families visited the graves of the departed (and frequently caught colds in the bitter November winds), all travelled to the home town or village and it was an occasion to meet up, like Christmas.

    As a child I didn’t like it, I was made to get up early, get on a steam train, walk miles to Grandfather’s house, from there walk miles to the cemetery, and then the whole thing in reverse in the dark.

    Having left home (and Catholicism) a long time ago, I barely remember family now, except when I write about it.

  2. Lydia says:

    Your grandmother was such a striking woman when young, and such love shows in the picture when she was old with you by her side. This post was really interesting to me, having spent the afternoon with inlaws, he being a retired Presbyterian minister…..and ending the evening attending a Dead Poets Reading in which the moderator gave an interesting short talk about All Souls Day and how the “spirit” of the four poets profiled tonight was alive via their celebrated words (it didn’t hurt that the four people portraying the poets were in full costume and did a splendid job of acting their poet-roles!).

  3. All Souls, day after All Saints for Catholics and Anglicans? I always wondered why we pray for them? I read The Catholic Church has done away with purgatory, so I figure my ancestors are either in heaven or hell, and given God’s mercy, I believe the latter.

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