Sunday, November 1, 2015

November 1 - All Saints' Day


All Saints' Day is a holy day of the Church wherein we remember all saints who have passed on from this life to rest in God with Christ. It is a holy day not because it is unique to honor the dead but because it is held as special by those who place their loyalty in another Kingdom altogether. It has been the tradition and practice of the Church to tell the stories of its people for as long as there has been a Church. It is this practice that I hope to incorporate into my life by telling the stories that matter. I trust that it is true that as we conform our lives to our stories, we will find that we are transformed. In many ways, All Saints' Day is the day that best sums up this project: telling the stories that matter.

I offer to you some of the quotes that I meditate on as I engage in this spiritual discipline of remembrance and reflection.

"It can be said, as a general rule, that the greatest saints are seldom the ones whose piety is most evident in their expression when they are kneeling at prayer, and that the holiest men in a monastery are almost never the ones who get that exalted look, on feast days, in the choir. The people who gaze up at Our Lady’s statue with glistening eyes are very often the ones with the worst tempers." ~Thomas Merton

"This is the standard New Testament designation for saints: the forgiven, who know it, act upon it and live by grace without angling for stained-glass-window status." ~F. Dean Lueking

"Being a Christian is one of the few things in life you cannot or should not try to do alone; we need help from all the saints--dead and alive, crazy and normal, known and unknown, and especially the everyday, ordinary believers." ~Daniel Clendenin

"In his holy flirtation with the world, God occasionally drops a pocket handkerchief. These handkerchiefs are called saints." ~Frederick Buechner

"In our era many believe you can be a Christian without the church, and perhaps you can be a better Christian without the hypocritical complications of church life. But the saints urge us to be in the church, engaged with other Christians in prayer, worship, and service. The church has a book, a set of prayers and practices, and its saints; it is our privilege to be shaped by its treasury. The church is a place where we can stand. The church supports us, ennobles, and encourages us." ~James C. Howell

"Where there is sorrow, there is holy ground." ~Oscar Wilde
"Holiness is the very principle of eternal life, the very beginning of eternal life in the heart, and that which will certainly grow up to eternal life." ~Jeremiah Burroughs

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