Honouring all Saints. Throughout the year the Church honours those Saints whose names and stories we know. Almost every day of our year is dedicated to God’s holy Saints. At the start of November the Church celebrates the Feast of All Saint as a way of honouring those whose names we do not know. We take the time to remember that there are many Saints in Heaven whose stories we do not know, whose lives were perhaps very simple and private, but who nevertheless achieved the glory of Heaven.
We belong to a large family. Being a Catholic means belonging to a large family of God’s children. This family can be divided into three sections: the Church triumphant (those who are in Heaven), the Church suffering (those who are in purgatory) and the Church militant (those who are here on earth). On November 1st we honour the Church triumphant (All Saints), and on November 2nd we honour Church militant (All Souls).
Saints are all different. When we look at the lives of many Saint we realize that they were all so very different. Some came from great wealth, some were very poor; some lived consecrated lives, others were married; some were sinners for much of their lives, others lived their entire lives in a very saintly way. They were all as different as you and me, but what united all of them was their love for God.
Saints are all the same. When we were baptised we were sealed with a sign of sanctity. From the moment of our baptism we began our journey towards sanctity. We must always remember that! We have been called to live in opposition to the secular world, we are called to live this radical call of holiness so that we can become witnesses of God in this world. We are not called to be shaped by the world, but rather to shape the world in the image and likeness of God. This is our call, this is our privilege, this is our joy.
November Joy. During the month of November we take the time to think of holiness by reflecting on the saints, on those who have died, and our own mortality. Our liturgical year will end soon, and the Church invites us to reflect on the last things, on the purpose of our lives, and on the gift of faith which leads us to a happy end. Blessed November to all!
Fr. Wojtek Kuzma