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November 1, 2015

All Saints Day 2015 (8am)

Passage: Revelation 7:9-10
Service Type:

I would like to share just three observations this morning as we celebrate again the Feast of All Saints: Firstly, the Christian departed and the Christian living are one family. Secondly, this very morning at this liturgy the departed and the living will pray together. Thirdly, to be a Christian is to be in some sense already a saint, and yet at the same time we are not yet saints. I would like to reflect briefly on these three suggestions….

In the lesson this morning we learn that the Saints are those men and women of untold numbers that gather round the throne of Christ in heaven: These are they, says the angel to St John, which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple... The Saints in heaven are like a good harvest crop: they are faithful Christian souls who have ripened in the light of God’s love and been gathered in already to the heavenly harvest. Chief among these Saints are, of course, Christ’s mother Mary, the Apostles and prophets, and holy men and women of Scripture. But also there are the Saints you know of from the Church’s history: George and Augustine, Francis and Nicholas … And there are the anonymous saints, the ones largely unrecognized in this world except by the few people whose lives they touch: close family friends, grandparents, mentors in the faith, sometimes priests and pastors, fellow Christians. Today we remember all of these Saints, and we pray to God for the grace to follow their good examples so that we may become like them....

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