Feast of All Saints

Blessed Feast of All Saints!

Feast of All Saints

Earth is so near to Heaven today that the one thought which fills all hearts is happiness.

–Dom Prosper Guéranger, The Liturgical Year

What a glorious day this is! From sunrise to sundown will be remembering and celebrating the eternal joy that our big brothers and sisters, the saints, are enjoying in Heaven, flowing from their perfect union with God. Over the years I have collected many special saints, like my patroness, St. Agnes, and my saint of this year, St. Damien de Veuster (St. Damien of Molokai). Both of their feasts have already passed this liturgical year, but wonderfully I get to enjoy them again today, as we celebrate all of the elect in Heaven, and the angels, and the Queen of Angels and Saints!

My go-to source for understanding the liturgy and the importance of dates on the Church calendar is the above quoted book, The Liturgical Year. I love the writing of Dom Guéranger–he explains so many beautiful things to us about all the great feasts of the Liturgical Year in his magnum opus. Another beautiful thing he says about All Saints’ Day is that:

This feast is truly the triumph of [the Church’s] motherhood; for the great crowd of the blessed before the throne of the Lamb are the sons and daughters she alone has given to the Lord.

–Dom Prosper Guéranger, The Liturgical Year

How glorious, how noble, and how triumphant the Church seems when we look up at the saints in Heaven. So celebrate this day–feast and enjoy!  (Below you will find some ideas to help you if you need some.) The whole Church is celebrating with us today. Rejoice and be glad!

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All Saints’ Day celebration suggestions:

  • Be sure to get to Mass today! This feast is usually a Holy Day of Obligation, and although it is not this year (2014), it is still one of the greatest solemnities of the Church Year. And the Liturgy and Sacraments are what we’re Catholics for, right? Right?
  • When doing your daily meditation on the Four Last Things today (Death–Judgment–Heaven–Hell), take some extra time to think about Heaven, God’s generous reward to the saints. Read these beautiful Scripture verses, Wisdom 3:1-9, that are today’s Offertory Chant (Douay-Rheims translation):

But the souls of the just are in the hand of God, and the torment of death shall not touch them.  In the sight of the unwise they seemed to die: and their departure was taken for misery.  And their going away from us, for utter destruction: but they are in peace.  And though in the sight of men they suffered torments, their hope is full of immortality. Afflicted in few things, in many they shall be well rewarded: because God hath tried them, and found them worthy of himself. As gold in the furnace, he hath proved them, and as a victim of a holocaust, he hath received them, and in time there shall be respect had to them.  The just shall shine, and shall run to and fro like sparks among the reeds.  They shall judge nations, and rule over people, and their Lord shall reign for ever. They that trust in him shall understand the truth: and they that are faithful in love, shall rest in him: for grace and peace are to his elect.

  • Today is a great day to pray the Litany of Saints (in English or in Latin)!
  • Make Soul Cakes, an English Catholic culinary tradition that is perhaps the origin of trick-or treating, and share the story with your family.
  • Dress up and have a party! So what if it’s the day after Hallowe’en? Even better–sometimes Hallowe’en costumes can be easily converted, and often you can come up with some clever uses for things in your scrap bag while you’re still in costumes-and-dress-up mode at the end of October. Here is a link that will make you really, really want to have an All Saints’ Day Party with your kids!

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One last quote from The Liturgical Year, to get you thinking about what All Saints’ Day prefigures–our glorious ultimate destiny at the end of the world:

The old enemy, hurled down with his followers into the abyss, will live on only to witness his own eternal defeat. The Son of Man, the Saviour of the world, will have delivered the kingdom of God to His Father; and God, the last end of all creation and redemption, will be all in all.

–Dom Prosper Guéranger, The Liturgical Year

The battle has already been won. Thanks be to God, Alleluia!

Blessed be God in His angels and in His saints!

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