This year is truly a blessing, November 1st falls on a Sunday and it allows us the opportunity to celebrate All Saints in a special way. As I have been reflecting on this great day, the first thing that comes to mind are probably our favorite saints. Some of our favorites are St. Anthony for those of us who loose things everyday and St. Jude for those impossible cases. If your like me my personal patron like St. Stephen is one I think of, and St Peter Chanel, the patron of the Marist High School where my vocation began I always remember.
I would like to lead our reflection on this day with the First letter of John. “See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God.” I believe that All Saints Day is really about the Love that God has for us by allowing us to be His children,. Through our Baptism in Jesus Christ we now have the opportunity to share in the divine life in a special way. All this is done out of the great love that God has for us. This love that God has for us in calling us His children is a sure thing. It’s real. What we shall become when we are transformed maybe not be fully known, but for now we know that we belong to God in a special way as His children.
The celebration of the Saints is an opportunity in a special way to look at the lives of God’s children and celebrate the great way that women and men over the centuries have lived lives as God’s children and responded to God’s love. You see that is the ultimate measure, how much are we willing to entrust ourselves to loving as God calls us to love. I believe the saints in their experience of God’s love in His Son Jesus Christ sought to live and share that love in response to God and most often in relationship to others.
In Matthews sermon on the mount we see the transforming love of God. When brining our whole selves, all that we are, all that we experience and that we hope for we are truly Blessed. The beatitudes looks on our experiences differently. What the world would deem unfortunate and a degradation, God transform for His glory and for our good. So for the meek with those who mourn there is comfort and blessing. For those who hunger, are merciful and clean of heart they are satisfied and know the righteous of God.
The three day celebration of Halloween (Eve of the Holy Ones), All Saints Day and All Souls day is a celebration of God’s love manifest in those who have responded to their experiences based upon that love. The saints entrusted their very selves into God’s unwavering hand and their lives became a living sacrifice of praise in thanksgiving for God who has shown so much love for us in allowing us to be His children. There is still more to come when we are all finally united in that sea of witness of God’s outpouring love.