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This week we celebrated two important days in the Church calendar. According to our friends (I hope I can call them that) over at the Catholic Encyclopedia these feast days are remembered for the following reasons:

All Saints Day ( November 1st)

Solemnity celebrated on the first of November. It is instituted to honour all the saints, known and unknown, and, according to Urban IV, to supply any deficiencies in the faithful’s celebration of saints ‘feasts during the year.

All Souls day

The commemoration of all the faithful departed is celebrated by the Church on 2 November.  The theological basis for the feast is the doctrine that the souls which, on departing from the body, are not perfectly cleansed from venial sins, or have not fully atoned for past transgressions, are debarred from the Beatific Vision, and that the faithful on earth can help them by prayers, almsdeeds and especially by the sacrifice of the Mass.

This got me to thinking. I am pretty sure we are “all souls” but could one make the argument that we are “ALL SAINTS” as well?

St. Paul for one had the view that at least all Christians were saints. One example: Romans 15:25 ” But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.”

The practice of canonization comes later in Church history and if you wander over to the Catholic Encyclopedia you will see it is a long (and I mean long) and involved process. They state that:

The Catholic Church canonizes or beatifies only those whose lives have been marked by the exercise of heroic virtue, and only after this has been proved by common repute for sanctity and by conclusive arguments.

My simple take on this is that we are all called to be saints. We have the opportunity to live lives of “heroic virtue.” For most of us, it will be hard to prove this in a way that satisfies the process of canonization so it is unlikely that they will name any churches after us.

Is it possible; however, that when we meet with Jesus upon our death, when our soul returns to be with the Father, that they may well welcome us as one of the saints?

A clue as to who gets to join the communion of saints might well have been in our gospel from a few weeks ago when the disciples asked Jesus:

“Then who can be saved? Jesus looked at them and said,”For human beings it is impossible, but not for God. All things are possible for God.” (Mark 10)

 

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