On the occasion of the Parentalia and the last day of this festival, the Feralia, the Sacra Flameno has published the text of a private rite to be conducted in le Palaso d’Etato later this evening:
The rite will begin…
The festival we celebrate today is named the Parentalia. It is dedicated to the memory of our ancestors and our loved ones who have passed away and have gone to the next world.
This festival sees living family members attend the graves of their ancestors, give them offerings, and to make them sure they are not forgotten.
Often these rites would be short and offerings could vary lavish to poor, but it had the same effect. One historian notes that the dead do not care for the gifts but, rather, to be remembered.
Please, join me now in remembering the gods of the dead — the di manibus — of our family and our State…
I consecrate this altar!
Janus, I invoke you foremost as beginner of all beginnings. Come now to bless this Your suppliant.
Ruler of the Realm of Death, Hades, I beseech You to look after the ancestors of our State of Sandus. Hold them and keep them safe within Your Elysinian Fields.
Queen of the Dead, Persephone, just as Your mother Holy Demeter does, bring light and warmth to the Dead. This I humbly ask as Your suppliant and as the loved member of myfamilia and our State.
Above all, Dear and Cherish Dead of my Familia and of our Sandus! Seek harm against none, for we remember You! This rite and these games we hold in Your honour!
May You continue to watch us as You watch from your graves on the Feralia. We atone for any forgetfulness in our duty to serve You, the Dead of our Familiae and our State!
With these offerings of sacred cakes, wine, flowers, and incense — offerings given to Gods in their own right! — know that we shall never forget!
Oh Gods whom I have mentioned, I ask this prayer on behalf of all our familiae and our Sandus! Ita est!
Ilicet! It is finished! May we continue to remember our Di Manibus!