Catechetical Spot

Can’t we all be more saintly?

We have just completed the celebration of the feast of All Saints on November 1 followed by The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed (All Souls Day) on November 2.  It seems that these two days are well kept in our northern climes as we face the dying of gardens and the shedding of leaves in preparation for the winter season.  We do know that without the dying we do not reach the beauty of new life which is to come after this time of dormancy.

In reflecting on the feast of All Saints, I asked myself can I be more saintly? If you desire a way to get in touch with the saints more easily, I strongly recommend a subscription to the booklet, “Give Us This Day.”  It is published by Liturgical Press, and is a wonderful way to study the readings of the day, a reflection on them and also includes morning and evening prayer.  What I have enjoyed so much is the reflection that is given on a particular saint as recognized by the Church and on others who have walked in the way of Jesus but might not have been officially recognized.

The reflections have led me to think that we can be more saintly.   Most of us have been baptized into the way of Jesus.  We have put on Jesus and are to live as he lived following the law of love; to love God with our whole mind, heart and soul and our neighbor as ourselves.  In reflecting on the lives of these holy people, I have found that their lives were not simple because of their call to follow Jesus.  They suffered because they were committed to God through his son, Jesus Christ.  They lived lives that enabled them to care for the poor and marginalized.  They suffered from illness, depression, anxiety and even times of a crisis in faith.  St. Mother Theresa suffered many years not certain of her belief in God.  In other words, the saints are ordinary people who suffer as we might suffer. What makes them extraordinary is that they were committed to loving God with their whole mind, heart and soul and loving their neighbor as themselves. We can do the same if we live a life of commitment. We can become more saintly in the eyes of God.

~by Helen Ackermann