Image by Albrecht Fietz from Pixabay
Greetings on All Saints’ Day!
In the New Testament we are called to be saints, and the Orthodox Church gives the title of saint to those who throughout history, have lived and died in Christ.
While Canonized (Glorified) Saints have their own feast days, there are countless multitudes of saints who don’t have a feast day… and some of these are even nameless Saints – known only to God!
Since the 4th century in Eastern Christendom, on the first Sunday after Pentecost, the Church continues to commemorate All the Saints (both past/present, known/unknown)! As all are alive in Christ, the saints are our friends and alive in Heaven. They are venerated, but not worshipped.
Today is a joint celebration honouring the Holy Apostles who spread the Gospel to the four corners of the earth, as well as All the Saints who’ve shone forth great love of Christ… whether by living a God-pleasing, righteous life, or by receiving a martyric crown.
[During the 8th century in Western Christendom, the Sunday of All Saints was transferred to the first Sunday in November – and even more recently was moved again to November 1st.]
Every one of us is the painter of his own life. Our soul is like the canvas, and the virtues are the paint. Jesus Christ is the image we should copy. ~ St. Gregory of Nyssa
To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. ~ Romans 1:7
Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both their’s and our’s: ~ 1 Corinthians 1:2
We live together with them (the Saints in heaven), in the house of the Heavenly Father, only in different parts of it. We live in the earthly, they in the heavenly half; but we can converse with them, and they with us. ~ St. John of Kronstadt
In God and in His Church there is no division between the living and the departed, but all are one in the love of the Father. Whether we are alive or whether we are dead, as members of the Church we still belong to the same family, and still have a duty to bear one another’s burdens. Therefore just as Orthodox Christians here on earth pray for one another and ask for one another’s prayers, so they pray for the faithful departed and ask the faithful departed to pray for them. Death cannot sever the bond of mutual love which links the members of the Church together. ~ Metropolitan Kallistos Ware
May you have a blessed All Saints’ Feast Day!