Today's Holy Day, the Feast of All Saints, raises up before our eyes not just the famous canonized saints recognized in the Church’s yearly calendar, but all those other holy ones whose lives were dedicated to God and the establishment of His Kingdom here on earth. And who are among them? Well, our parents, our grandparents, as well as those members of our families who sacrificed their own comfort and resources in order that we might have our Catholic Faith. They are the nuns and teachers who taught us about Jesus, about God, and the Sacraments. They are our friends who helped us to make good choices. They are priests who inspired us, prayed for us, and prayed with us. They are people who lived down the street and dropped everything to come and help us, and to care for us when we were sick, or when we were in trouble.  When we think about holiness, many of us tend to think that only extraordinary people are holy people, those “other people.” Perhaps that's a way of defending against the idea that God is asking us to be holy, too. If only a few extraordinary people are saints, we then think we don't have to make the effort, or we can put it off until "later on, some time." We tell ourselves that maybe someday we'll think about praying more, going to Mass more often and later on clean up our act so we can be more holy.  But that is not how God sees it.  God sees the saints as being too numerous to count. The call to holiness is universal. Everyone is called to make His love real in the lives of those around them. Holiness isn't something that is distant and far removed from us; it is near, and close at hand. Holiness means living lives of integrity and truth, wholesome and integrated lives in which we are close to others while being close with God. It means forgiving others when they injure us; it means not holding grudges against them. To live a life of holiness means that one gives up clinging to one's prejudices, resentments, and the desire to get even with others. You've heard it said: "I don't get mad -- I just get even.” To be holy means that you give up being mad, AND you give up “getting even.”  Holiness means you don't play mind games with those around you, particularly with the members of your family, especially your mother and your father, your brothers and sisters. Holiness means that you reveal the truth of yourself to them, that you don't hide who you really are and what you are really doing. And holiness means that you are open to God. It means that you can listen to what God wants to say to you. God has a Word for you, He has something He wants to say to you. Holiness, living holistically with God means that you give God time in which you ask Him for things that you need, a time in which He can ask you for what He wants of you. Holiness involves what you're doing right now, namely joining together in Christ's family of faith to share His loving Presence here in a holistic common union that we share with Christ… our Holy Communion here when you and I, together as His loving friends and faithful disciples, share His sacred Body and His precious Blood.  This is All Saints Day, a special day each year when we place in our vision what God has in mind for us and recognize that we are called to be a part of that vast multitude of holy ones whose numbers are so great they cannot be counted. This is All Saints Day, your feast day and mine.  What remains is for us to break out of our ordinary patterns of living and try something fresh and new-let’s live the life of a saint. Happy Feast Day!


NB the above is largely taken from a homily by Fr. Charles Irvin

AuthorCathy Remick