Orangemen taking part in last week's Twelfth celebrations have been warned to not use 'RIP'.

In a special souvenir programme to mark the event, Orangemen were advised to “reject and repudiate the superstitions of Rome” because rejecting God's offer of salvation would mean “tragically when you die your soul is lost in hell forever.”

The article, previously published in the Orange Standard, focused on why Protestants “should not use” the term ‘rest in peace’ when discussing the dead on social media, reports the Impartial Reporter

County Grand Master of County Fermanagh Grand Orange Lodge Stuart Brooker said the message in the article was “very clear and well put together.”

The article stated that while the term is “probably being used in all innocence and sincerity it is further illustration of spiritual confusion within Protestant circles.”

“The letters ‘RIP’ meaning ‘Requiescant in pace’ or ‘rest in peace’, have long been used by the Roman Catholic Church, and can be frequently seen, for example, in death notices and gravestones.

“However, the use of ‘RIP’ has become more widespread in recent years and it is now often quoted by many Protestants on the social media sites Facebook and Twitter,” stated the article.

The article warned that if God’s offer of salvation has been “rejected” then “tragically when you die your soul is lost in hell forever.”

“This is what the Bible teaches, and there is no Biblical warrant for praying for the dead or for wishing that their soul might ‘rest in peace’.

“The redeemed do not need our prayers, and the lost cannot benefit from them once they have passed from us. We would be better to pray more for them while they are alive.

“Let us reject and repudiate the superstitions of Rome and remain faithful to the clear teaching of the word of God,” the article added.

Asked for his thoughts on the article, which was available in the 120 page programme last week, Mr. Brooker said: “I think the message in the article is very clear and well put together, and I couldn’t add anything further to it. This article clearly explains why we as Protestants, and members of the Orange Institution, shouldn’t use the term ‘RIP’. It also reminds us that if we need guidance in any matter, we should refer to what the bible teaches.”