The following selection of Catholic prayers are for use in relation to death and dying. Some are intended for a specific point in an individual’s journey, others for after death has occurred for use by family and friends. All should bring relief and some comfort at a very difficult time.
Prayers at time of death
Go forth, Christian soul, from this world
in the name of God the almighty Father,
who created you,
in the name of Jesus Christ, Son of the living God,
who suffered for you,
in the name of the Holy Spirit,
who was poured out upon you,
go forth, faithful Christian,
May you live in peace this day,
may your home be with God in Zion,
with Mary, the virgin Mother of God,
with Joseph, and all the angels and saints.
Catholic prayers for the dying and the sick
Lord Jesus Christ, Saviour of the world,
we pray for your servant N.,
and commend him/her to your mercy.
For his/her sake you came down from heaven;
receive him/her now into the joy of your kingdom.
For though he/she has sinned,
he/she has not denied the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
but has believed in God
and has worshipped his/her Creator.
Father, your Son accepted our sufferings
to teach us the virtue of patience in human illness.
Hear the prayers we offer for our sick brother/sister.
May all who suffer pain, illness or disease
realize that they have been chosen to be saints
and know that they are joined to Christ
in his suffering for the salvation of the world.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Prayers for a peaceful death
All praise and glory are yours, Lord our God,
for you have called us to serve you in love.
Bless all who have grown old in your service
and give N. strength and courage
to continue to follow Jesus your Son.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Catholic prayers for the dying
When the moment of death seems near, the following prayer may be said:
I commend you, my dear brother/sister,
to almighty God,
and entrust you to your Creator.
May you return to Him
who formed you from the dust of the earth.
May holy Mary, the angels, and all the saints
come to meet you as you go forth from this life.
May Christ who was crucified for you
bring you freedom and peace.
May Christ who died for you
admit you into his garden of paradise.
May Christ, the true Shepherd,
Acknowledge you as one of his flock.
May He forgive all your sins,
And set you among those He has chosen.
May you see your Redeemer face to face,
And enjoy the vision of God for ever.
What will separate us from the love of Christ? (Rom 8:35)
Whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s. (Rom 14:8)
We shall always be with the Lord. (1 Thes 4:17)
To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul. (Ps 25:1)
Though I should walk in the valley of the shadow of death, no evil would I fear, for you are with me. (Ps 23:4)
Into your hands I commend my spirit. (Ps 31:6a)
Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom. (Lk 23:42)
Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. (Acts 7:59)
Holy Mary, pray for me.
Saint Joseph, pray for me.
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, assist me in my last agony.
Prayers immediately after death
The following prayers may be recited immediately after death and may be repeated in the hours that follow:
Saints of God, come to his/her aid!
Come to meet him/her, Angels of the Lord!
Receive his/her soul and present him/her to God the Most High.
May Christ, who called you, take you to Himself;
may Angels lead you to Abraham’s side.
Give him/her eternal rest, O Lord,
and may your light shine on him/her forever.
Let us pray.
All-powerful and merciful God,
we commend to you N., your servant.
In your mercy and love,
blot out the sins he/she has committed
through human weakness.
In this world he/she has died:
let him/her live with you forever.
Through Christ our Lord.
These verses may also be used:
V/. Eternal rest grant unto him/her, O Lord.
R/. And let perpetual light shine upon him/her.
V/. May he/she rest in peace.
V/. May his/her soul and the souls of all the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God,
rest in peace.