This year the Solemnity of All Saints takes precedence over the Sunday Liturgy. This celebration honours all those who have died and are now with the Lord in Heaven. Traditionally we say it honours those who have already been purified and are in the full presence of God’s love. On 2nd November, All Souls Day, we shall pray for those who have died and are in need of purification.
For most of us, there is a question about what it is to be a saint. It is a good question because often we only think of the extraordinary saints who have been proclaimed saints by the Church. We have to be honest and say that we do not know how all this works but we know one thing: God loves us and invites each one of us to be a saint. All we have to do is try to be faithful to God’s will in our lives and live with God’s love. Of course we will fail in these attempts but we can always get up and try again. It is this loving God of ours who can accomplish this transformation in us, but only if we keep trying to be faithful and loving.
Our joy today is about having this inner longing to be like the saints – not in some unreal way but in our desire to know and serve the living God. Each of us has his or her own way to holiness because God created each one of us as a special gift of divine love. Part of living is to discover this individual and unique gift of God’s love in our life. Again, the only way to do this is to try to faithful and loving.
All of us are given people in our lives, our family, our friends, our workmates, our neighbours and we live in a wider community of individuals. As Christians our vocation is to enrich all those we come into contact with. To be loving, caring, just, forgiving, generous. In other words we strive to be saints, but fallible and always in need of mercy.