Feast of All Saints Year B – November 1st 2015
‘How happy are the poor in spirit; theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Happy the gentle: they shall have the earth for their heritage.
Happy those who mourn: they shall be comforted.
Happy those who hunger and thirst for what is right: they shall be satisfied.
Happy the merciful: they shall have mercy shown them.
Happy the pure in heart: they shall see God.
Happy the peacemakers: they shall be called sons of God.
Happy those who are persecuted in the cause of right: theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
‘Happy are you when people abuse you and persecute you and speak all kinds of calumny against you on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven; this is how they persecuted the prophets before you’
“So and so is a bit of a saint!’ What do we mean by saying this?
Saints were people who were close to God. We venerate them and name them. We pray to them and are inspired by them.
The gospel gives another clue why they were saints – the qualities of their lives.
Called to be holy those who mourn…people who are really good – merciful; peacemakers; and hunger for justice. Nothing about prayer – this is understood and their lives come from prayer. But the qualities of a saint are human qualities we really like.
A saint is a person close to God in prayer and from this centre comes his or her service of people. Someone may do the same work but not be a saint.
People love to meet a real saint – they bring out the best in us and not remind us of the worst!
We can extend our feast today to salute all the unknown saints we have met.
CALLED TO BE HOLY
Called to be holy – in a human way. A saint is not a perfect human being, but one who has brought his or her life totally to God and becomes human in a way of love, compassion and care for all.
Saints of this parish – pray for us.
Donal Neary SJ
Fr Donal Neary SJ is editor of the Sacred Heart Messenger