After All Hallows Eve Comes the Celebration of Saints
Who are the saints in your life that have shaped you and your faith?
The day after Halloween is an important holy day in the life of the church. All Saints Day is not as well known as Halloween, but it’s an annual celebration that John Wesley – in a 1767 journal entry – referred to as “a festival I truly love.”
On All Saints Day, United Methodists celebrate the communion of saints who shape their spiritual life. Saints are people who have lived faithful lives, shared their faith with others and encouraged those around them. These saints inspire us and make an impact on our lives. Some saints are still with us while others have passed. These saints surround us in the “great cloud of witness” as referenced in Hebrews 12.
Many churches celebrate the first Sunday in November and will light candles, ring bells of remembrance and call by name the saints who were lost in the last year. All Saints Day can be comforting or painful for those who have lost loved ones in the past year. Some look forward to this Sunday each year as a way to remember those who have influence their faith journey.
Safiyah Fosua wrote the following mediation for Discipleship Ministries in honor of All Saints Day:
We give you thanks, O God, for all the saints who ever worshiped you,
whether in arbors or cathedrals,
wooden churches or cement meeting houses.
We give you thanks, O God, for hands lifted in praise:
manicured hands and hands stained with grease or soil,
strong hands and hands gnarled with age,
We thank you, God, for hardworking saints,
whether hard-hatted or aproned,
blue-collared or three-piece-suited.
They left their mark for you, for us, for our children to come.
Thank you for the sacrifices made by those who have gone before us.
Bless the memories of your saints.
May we learn how to walk wisely from their examples of faith, dedication, worship, and love.
Published: Tuesday, October 30, 2018