Collect for All Saints' Day
Almighty God, you have knit together your elect in one communion and fellowship in the mystical body of your Son Christ our Lord: Give us grace so to follow your blessed saints in all virtuous and godly living, that we may come to those ineffable joys that you have prepared for those who truly love you; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.
Readings for today can be found here.
Rite II, Spiritual Communion & Meditation
Rev. Bambi Willis, Rev. David P. Casey, Fred Kerby, and Barry Holliday have coordinated our service for this morning. The service can be found here: https://youtu.be/ezCbELDYrxI
We will be doing Rite II and you can follow along starting on page 355 in the Book of Common Prayer. The of Common Prayer (BCP) can be found here. The Psalm for this morning is
Psalm 34:1-10, 22 found on page 627 in the BCP. The readings are Revelation 7:9-17;
1 John 3:1-3; and Matthew 5:1-12.
A Meditation for All Saints' Day
When my husband A.G. died in 2014, his service was here at Trinity. He was buried in a casket, Bishop Susan Goff was the preacher and the celebrant was a dear colleague named Melana. We shared communion and Melana chose Eucharistic Prayer B. In that prayer which we will use this morning the celebrant says: In the fullness of time, put all things in subjection under your Christ, and bring us to that heavenly country where with (_________ and) all your saints, we may enter the everlasting heritage of your sons and daughters;”
Melana inserted A.G.’s name. I thought for sure the lid of the casket would fly open and A.G. would rise up to declare once and for all that he was not a saint!
On this All Saints’ Day, we always begin our service with the reading of names of those who have died. We remember these folk because we loved them and continue to mourn their deaths. We remember these folk because we look forward to that day when we all might be together in God’s “heavenly country.”
We do not remember these folk because they were perfect. All of us are human with gifts and graces to share, strengths and weaknesses that sometimes get in the way of loving others as we love ourselves.
We remember these folk because through them we caught a glimpse of the glory of God. In the Catholic Church, a saint is someone who has worked miracles. Is there anything more miraculous than being brought into the nearer presence of God through another human being?
I loved my husband and my husband loved me. But he was not perfect and you all know I am not. Saintliness is conferred on us through Christ. We are saints because Christ died for us.
On Wednesdays during our service of morning prayer I like to remember someone from our book The Great Cloud of Witnesses. Some of these folk have been meek and mild, peacemakers and witnesses to justice, pure in heart and merciful as we hear in the Beatitudes this morning in the gospel of Matthew. But all of them are human and usually shown forth traits that are less than saintly.
Remember this day that you are a saint not because you are perfect but because through you God can show forth God’s glory in ways you may never even know. Will any of us know what our smile meant to the person who checked us out of the grocery store meant, our phone call to someone who is shut in, our card or letter to the one who received it or the words “I love you”?
Today we remember we are blessed and have been graced by folk who have born witness to the glory of God for us. Let us give thanks.
The All Saints' Day Remembrance list for 2020 can be found here.
Please remember all those on our prayer list this week found here or in the Good News Daily found here.
The Rev. Bambi Willis
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Sermon from the Bishop's Chapel
The Rt. Rev. Susan E. Goff
Bishop Suffragan and Ecclesiastical Authority
The written version can be found here.
The YouTube version can be found here.