READINGS for 2006-11-01

Didache | Companion | Sabbath


Feast of the Solemnity of All Saints


?Fortunate are those with a pure heart, for they shall see God.? - Matthew 5:8

I have always had a soft spot in my heart for them. I considered them as God?s special children. To me, they possess a pure heart and mind. They do not think the way we do. They do not judge others like we do. They do not ask what you have achieved, what you can or cannot do.
      Through Faith and Light Community, I was able to validate those thoughts and feelings. Coming in close contact with them, I learned my most valuable lessons in non-judgmental acceptance of other people. In fact, during our celebrations, they are the ones who welcome our guests so warmly that the latter would say they felt so accepted in the community.
      I say Amen to that ? for with people like Frances, Myra, Maiko, Joel, Eldon, Anton, and Ryan ? our special children in our community ? I have felt not only accepted by them, but I have learned to accept myself, too, weaknesses and all!

What makes it difficult for me to accept other people?

Lord, help me to accept myself more, so that I may be able to accept other people better.



Revelation 7:2-4, 9-14

Today is the day that we celebrate all those who have gone before us into eternal life. One of the things that I can never understand is why so many people observe the celebration of Halloween at the same time. Halloween is exactly the opposite to celebrating the lives of the saints! It is a celebration of darkness and evil. Its roots lie in an ancient Celtic practice where the God of death is paid off so that he will not visit one?s family that year. It may seem to be a lot of fun dressing up like monsters, etc, but it should be just as much fun to dress up in costumes of the saints! How will I be celebrating All Saints? Day this year?

2 Then I saw another angel come up from the East, holding the seal of the living God. He cried out in a loud voice to the four angels who were given power to damage the land and the sea, 3 ?Do not damage the land or the sea or the trees until we put the seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God.? 4 I heard the number of those who had been marked with the seal, one hundred and forty-four thousand marked from every tribe of the Israelites: 9 After this I had a vision of a great multitude, which no one could count, from every nation, race, people, and tongue. They stood before the throne and before the Lamb, wearing white robes and holding palm branches in their hands. 10 They cried out in a loud voice: ?Salvation comes from our God, who is seated on the throne, and from the Lamb.? 11 All the angels stood around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They prostrated themselves before the throne, worshipped God, 12 and exclaimed: ?Amen. Blessing and glory, wisdom and thanksgiving, honor, power, and might be to our God forever and ever. Amen.? 13 Then one of the elders spoke up and said to me, ?Who are these wearing white robes, and where did they come from?? 14 I said to him, ?My lord, you are the one who knows.? He said to me, ?These are the ones who have survived the time of great distress; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.?


Psalm 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6

R: Lord, this is the people who longs to see your face.

1 The LORD?s are the earth and its fullness; the world and those who dwell in it. 2 For he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers. (R) 3 Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD? Or who may stand in his holy place? 4 One whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean, who desires not what is vain. (R) 5 He shall receive a blessing from the LORD, a reward from God his savior. 6 Such is the race that seeks for him, that seeks the face of the God of Jacob. (R)


1 John 3:1-3

The call upon every Christian is to become as pure as Christ. Practically speaking this means that we should try to keep as far away from sin and all the minions of Satan as possible. We should rejoice in the good things that God has given us and refrain from giving any glory or honor to anything that is remotely associated with evil. Let us always choose to live as children of the light and ensure that any of the works of darkness have absolutely no place in our lives at all.

1 See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are God?s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 Everyone who has this hope based on him makes himself pure, as he is pure.


Matthew 5:1-12

The beatitudes describe the sort of life that God expects us to live as His children. In embracing these characteristics of Jesus? life, we will become more like Him and help drive the works of sin far from our lives. It is not easy to develop these attitudes of heart in our lives. But if we persevere, and with God?s grace, it is possible. Let us open our hearts to the grace of the Holy Spirit and invite Him to teach us what it means to live according to the beatitudes.

1 When he saw the crowds, he went up the mountain, and after he had sat down, his disciples came to him. 2 He began to teach them, saying: 3 ?Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4 Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5 Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land. 6 Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied. 7 Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8 Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God. 9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 10 Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you [falsely] because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven. Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

my reflections
How will I be celebrating All Saints? Day this year?



God?s special verse/thought for me today________________



Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________





No? Well St. Paul wrote, ?It is the will of God for you to become holy? (1 Thessalonians 4:3). You have no right to say ?No, impossible. Not me.?
      What is your image of a saint? Do you think of those sweet statues with long flowing hair and pale face, eyes turned to heaven in ecstasy?
      No, I also would not like to become that kind of a saint. These pictures are caricatures. How I love photos of Bl. Mother Teresa! Bent by age and work, the face wrinkled like a dried-up prune ? and then the eyes! Sparkling like stars, windows to the soul of a saint who keeps God?s peace and joy in her heart in spite of the sufferings and burdens life brings.
      Pope John Paul II beatified and canonized more saints than all former popes together. And not only priests and nuns.
      There were ordinary people who lived an ordinary life: Youth, children, a medical doctor, a journalist, a lawyer, a housewife, a married couple? It is as if Pope John Paul II wanted to shout: Wherever you are, God has called you to holiness. You can become a saint where God has placed you, even in your kitchen or office.
      During my home vacation, I like to visit a famous Marian shrine in Bavaria. After visiting the miraculous Virgin, I go to the monastery of the Capuchins to the tomb of St. Konrad who did for 41 years nothing else than take care of the visitors who rang the bell at the door of the convent. What made him a saint? He did this humble task well and did it for the Lord.
      When St. Therese of the Child Jesus entered the convent at 15, few knew her. When she died nine years later, even fewer knew her. What heroic acts are recorded about her? None. And yet, Pope John Paul II declared her a ?Doctor of the Church.? Why? In her autobiography Story of a Soul she described the ?little way? to holiness. She tried to cope gently with irritable nuns, curb her tongue and do unasked small services ? all out of love for Jesus. That made her a saint.
      Today, we honor all those not officially canonized friends of God who are with him rejoicing in eternal glory. They invite us to follow them so that November 1 will be, in the future, your feast day and mine. Fr. Rudy H.

What has hindered me so far to aim for holiness? What can I do day after day to proceed on the way to holiness?

Lord, holiness seemed so unattainable for me. Thank You for telling me today that to become a saint is not a privilege but a necessity and that I can reach this goal following the example of ?simple? saints, like St. Konrad and St. Therese. Help me to become holy by sanctifying my daily life, by doing small things out of love for You.

All Saints in Heaven, intercede for our salvation.

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