On November 2, set an extra place at the dinner table for your faithful departed. All Souls Day, also known to many as the Day of the Dead, is the day spirits of the deceased are honored and memorialized.
Followers of the Christian faith believe, probably fairly accurately, that no one is devoid of sin. Upon death, spirits must sit tight in a place of limbo known as purgatory whilst the sins of their lives are eradicated.
When, as a teen, you were told by your elders that certain transgressions would follow you forever, they weren’t kidding. However, by maintaining close relationships with family and friends, you may have bought an express ticket through those pearly gates of Heaven.
On All Souls Day, these loving individuals will, hopefully, remember to join in the traditional festivities after you’ve left this world and incant a few prayers for your temporarily displaced soul.
In addition to prayer and visitation to individuals’ graves, special masses are held in honor of the faithful departed. Parades and festivals take place in which lavishly decorated skull replicas are displayed.
Meals are offered to souls of the deceased. Grandma is apparently coming to dinner after all, so heed fair warning. Your red pasta sauce had better be made to her recipe’s exact specifications or she will haunt you for months.
Extra place settings are laid out for the departed soul, along with an altar-like presentation of pictures, memorial items and marigolds, the symbolic flower of death.
If you believe “when you’re dead you’re done” and are skeptical about anything having to do with spiritual afterlife, consider celebrating All Souls Day simply by putting together a scrapbook of photographs and mementos.
Invite family members to participate while you exchange memorable stories. The result will be a lasting book of memories you can reflect upon for years to come.
However, just for good measure, make sure that dinner is the best meal you’ve ever served an invisible guest.