In the United Methodist Church, we generally term all true Christian believers “saints.” On All Saints Day, we remember all Christians from the past. We include in this observance those near and dear to us who have died and who now live on in heaven with our Lord. Many churches celebrate the first Sunday in November by having a moment of special remembrance such as lighting of candles to recall and honor by name those within the congregation who have died during the previous year.
Prayer for All Saints Day
Dear Father, We thank you for the communion of saints through which we are mysteriously united in Christ with those who have walked before us and with us in the faith. Although they now rest from their labors in your heavenly realm, we continually draw upon their indelible and living examples of excellence and holiness. We especially remember our loved ones, (insert their names). We are grateful for the way they have shared their lives, struggles, faith, courage and acts of mercy during their lifetimes so that we might today live better lifetimes of joyful service to You in your kingdom.
With them we pray in one accord, “Thy Kingdom come, they will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Preserve the vivid lessons of their deeds of heroic trust, healing compassion and sacrificial love. Inspire our hearts to dare to follow in their fearless footsteps. Impart to us the heavenly perspective of eternity that they now enjoy. Help us to gaze steadily toward your face as they did before us, resisting evil and humbly depending on you to strengthen and preserve us in the days of testing.
We make this prayer to you, the God of all nations, who calls us each to yourself that we might aspire to holiness and service in concert with the work of the saints of the ages. To you be the glory and praise and honor for all time to come. Amen.
Copyright Karen Barber 2012. Used with permission.