We can commit ourselves to remembering the Faithful Departed today and every day
Reflections on the readings for the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed (All Souls) (November 2, 2018): WIS 3:1-9; PS 23:1-3,3-4,5,6; ROM 5:5-11; Matthew 25:31-46
MISSIO offers “Mission In Scripture” to nurture a missionary heart, providing reflections on the missionary themes in the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
On this All Souls Day we call to mind our own family and friends who have died, as well as all the Faithful Departed.
The Church has encouraged prayer for the dead since its beginning. However, it was not until the middle ages when monasteries started commemorating their deceased members, that the tradition of a day dedicated to honoring and praying for the dead took hold. Because sin takes a toll on souls, making them unprepared to enjoy the presence of Almighty God, they are purified in purgatory. Through fasting, almsgiving, and charitable deeds as well as prayer, those of us on earth can help the departed gain heaven. “The souls of the just are in the hand of God, and no torment shall touch them. They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead;… but they are in peace.… Chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed, because God tried them and found them worthy of Himself” (Wisdom 3:1-3, 5).
God, the source of truth, goodness and holiness, is both a just and merciful Lord. He loves every person He ever created and wants them to be with Him for eternity. But we must be worthy of His company. If we have opened ourselves to our Lord, yet not allowed Him to transform us during our lifetime, He will do so in death. Let us cooperate with His grace for the good of our own souls and the welfare of others, both living and dead.
Suggested missionary action: Let us pray for those people dear to us who have died: loved ones, friends, neighbors and co-workers. And let us also pray for those who have no loved ones to think of them and ask God’s mercy on all those in purgatory – not just today, but every day.