Happy All Saints Day!

Adoration of the Trinity is an oil-on-panel painting by German Renaissance artist Albrecht Dürer, executed in 1511 and now in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, Austria. Wikipedia

Happy All Saints Day!

Last night most of the U.S. celebrated Halloween; the Catholic Church celebrated All Hallows Eve—the same thing, but very different!

Halloween means All Hallows Eve, which is the evening before All Hallows Day, or All Saints Day!

All Saints Day, Nov. 1, is the day we celebrate the Church Triumphant--all those whose lives have proven they have reached the heavenly heights!

On this day, one of my favorite Scriptures is read at the Catholic Mass: Chapter 7, verses 2-4, and 9-14 of the Book of Revelation: “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” (Rev 7:14).

Now, not all saints have been martyrs, but all who arrive in Heaven do make their tattered, worn, and dirty robes WHITE in the BLOOD of the Lamb. For our sins are forgiven because of the sacrifice of Christ’s Blood. We rejoice with those who have fought the good fight and have won.

On November 2, we celebrate All Souls Day, the Day of the Dead. We pray for these dead for they are the Church Suffering.

They are suffering, for although they may have lived a good life, they still need some “polishing up” before they enter Heaven. For you may know that Revelation 21:27 mentions that nothing unclean will enter the Heavenly Jerusalem. Only the Holy ones can enter it.

How many truly holy people do you know? If you’re not sure that your deceased friends or family members would make the “Holy” cut, this is the time to pray for them. In fact, we need to pray always and offer up sufferings for the purification of their souls.

Now, we are not being judgmental. But we know that we don't see things as God does. And although God is loving and forgiving, he is also just.

Purification—yes, that’s where we get the word purgatory, and yes, we need to pray for all our dead loved ones. That’s how our sins are purged—even the sins Jesus has forgiven; it's as though they leave a residue until we're completely purified.

I like to think of Purgatory as the shower and preparation time one needs to take before walking down the aisle on their wedding day.

On that day, one just wants to hurry up and get married, but who would do that before taking a shower and looking their best?

We are the Bride of Christ. We are about to be presented to Christ, the Groom. I want to be purified of all my selfishness before meeting Him face to face.

To be purified, we must do as He commands and take up our Cross, our sufferings--lovingly and patiently. How many of us do that?

Let us begin, and let us also offer up those sufferings for those in Purgatory, for this is what Colossians 1:24 is speaking about:
"Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his body, which is the church..."

We, the Church Militant, can offer up our sufferings, united to Christ's, since we, as baptized Christians, become members of the Body of Christ.

What a blessing this is! We, the Church Militant, can help the Church Suffering in Purgatory to become the Church Triumphant! Praise be to Jesus Christ, Our King!

Happy Holy Weekend!