Rejoice for our brothers and sisters from throughout the ages who are now with our Lord in their heavenly home
Reflections on the readings for the Solemnity of All Saints (November 1, 2020): RV 7:2-4,9-14; PS 24:1-2,3-4,5-6; 1 JN 3:1-3; MT 5:1-12
MISSIO offers “Preaching Mission,” as a homily help, providing connections to mission from the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
Let us thank God everyday for His mercy – and His immeasurable desire to spend eternity in our company.
Today we celebrate the love and mercy of God not only with each other, but also with all those enjoying His company in their eternal glory. This feast of All Saints reminds us that we are part of the Communion of Saints; that is, all who share in the life of Christ on earth, in heaven, or temporarily, in purgatory. Indeed, these last we will commemorate in a special way tomorrow. In the letter from St. John, we hear him encourage the early Christian community to remain faithful in the love of our Almighty Father who cherishes us so much. “See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know Him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like Him” (1 John 3:1-2).
All of us living now on earth have the opportunity to draw closer to Christ our Redeemer. He came among us to sacrifice Himself in order to grant us everlasting life in the divine presence of the Blessed Trinity. We can look to those in heaven for wonderful examples of how to emulate Christ in our day-to-day existence. In the Gospel reading today, we listen to Jesus tell His disciples, then and now, how to follow His way. The Beatitudes describe a life well lived: by being poor in spirit, meek, merciful, clean of heart, peacemakers. Christ calls us to a relationship with Himself and with each other that is truly one of deep love. Instead of focusing on ourselves, He wants us to put God first and to care about and for other people. St. Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus, wrote a prayer that may help us appreciate what it takes to be a saint. It asks Christ to teach us how to do and to be all He wants. “Lord Jesus, teach me to be generous; teach me to serve You as You deserve, to give and not to count the cost, to fight and not to heed the wounds, to toil and not to seek for rest, to labor and not to ask for any reward, but that of knowing that I do your will.” Let us thank God everyday for His mercy – and His immeasurable desire to spend eternity in our company.