Abrahamic / Middle Eastern Christianity A Prayer for the Dead By Saint Ignatius of Antioch Share Flipboard Email Print A man in a cemetery in winter. Nicholas McComber/E+/Getty Images Christianity Catholicism Prayers Beliefs and Teachings Tips Worship Saints Holy Days and Holidays Christianity Origins The Bible The New Testament The Old Testament Practical Tools for Christians Christian Life For Teens Christian Prayers Weddings Inspirational Bible Devotions Denominations of Christianity Funerals and Memorial Services Christian Holidays Christian Entertainment Key Terms in Christianity Latter Day Saints View More By ThoughtCo Updated May 04, 2019 This Prayer for the Dead (sometimes titled A Prayer for the Deceased) is traditionally attributed to Saint Ignatius of Antioch. Ignatius, the third bishop of Antioch in Syria (Saint Peter was the first bishop) and a disciple of Saint John the Evangelist, was martyred in the Colosseum in Rome by being fed to wild beasts. On his way to Rome from Syria, Saint Ignatius witnessed to the Gospel of Christ in preaching, epistles to Christian communities (including a famous Letter to the Romans and one to Saint Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna and the last of the disciples of the Apostles to meet his death by martyrdom), and the composing of prayers, of which this is reputed to be one. Even if this prayer is of slightly later vintage and merely ascribed to Saint Ignatius, it still shows that Christian prayer for the dead, which implies belief in what would later come to be known as Purgatory, is a very early practice. This is a very beautiful prayer to pray during November, the month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory (and especially on All Souls Day), or at any time that you fulfill the Christian duty of praying for the dead. Prayer for the Dead By Saint Ignatius of Antioch Receive in tranquility and peace, O Lord, the souls of your servants who have departed this present life to come to you. Grant them rest and place them in the habitations of light, the abodes of blessed spirits. Give them the life that will not age, good things that will not pass away, delights that have no end, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.