According to Christian traditions, the main commemoration of the deceased is held on the day of the funeral, for 9 days and for 40 days. Most often, the commemoration comes down to a memorial meal, but you should not think that people gather just to eat, this event has the goal of paying tribute to the memory of the deceased, praying for the repose of his soul.
Christian customs imply that during the memorial meal, the congregation pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased. Absolutely everything during the commemoration is important, including the menu. The approximate plan for the commemoration is as follows.
Read the prayer "Our Father" before you sit down at the table. Throughout all the commemoration, remember the deceased, but memories of some bad deeds of the deceased are not acceptable. Laughter, funny songs or foul language are not allowed at the table.
Serve kutya (rice or wheat porridge with honey and raisins) as the first course. It is best to light it up during a memorial service, or at least sprinkle it with holy water. This dish is a symbol of eternal life, since a person, like a grain, will sprout (be reborn) in Christ.
There is no need to rely on the rule: the more food on the table, the better, this is not true. Quite the opposite, food should be simple, modest. The important thing is that people get together to commemorate the deceased, the food is just a symbol.
Please note, if the commemoration day fell on a weekday of Great Lent, reschedule the event over the weekend. Also remember that men at the commemoration should be bareheaded, while women, on the other hand, with tucked-up hair in headscarves.
If on the day of the funeral, everyone who was in the cemetery is invited to the funeral, then for 9 days only the relatives and closest friends of the deceased are invited to the funeral.
Remember that you cannot drink alcohol during a meal, even wine is not recommended to be put on the table. Also, do not put on the table a photograph of the deceased with a glass of vodka covered with black bread, all these customs are simply relics of the past and are not supported by the Orthodox faith.
Do not limit yourself to the phrase: "The kingdom of heaven to the departed." Pray for the deceased, begin each meal with a short prayer.
Also, on the days of commemoration, it is very good to give to the poor, so that people who need food and are closer to God pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased.
In addition to the meal, they order a prayer service for the repose of the deceased; for this, simply submit a note with the name of the deceased (in the genitive case) to the church booth.
You can remember not only on the 3rd, 9th and 40th days, there is a custom of the anniversary of death, on his birthday and on the day of the Angel, these days people also go to the cemetery and go to church.