Homily – November 1, 2020

Every evening at the end of our meal we read out the names of all the men of our Passionist Province who died on this day. Some of these men died before our time. Some were our professors or our superiors, some we lived with in different monasteries. After their names are read we share our memories of the ones we knew. Some were great preachers, some great leaders, some great teachers. Many we remember with great kindness, others not so much, after all we are aa family. Some of these men had power over us as seminarians. They could decide whether we stayed of sent home. Some we remember as saints – others, not so.

Today is the feast of All Saints. Today we remember the saints we knew and those who challenged us to be saints – I’ve worked with you good people of St. Gabriel’s since 1960 and I’ve known so many saints among you – men and women, mothers and fathers who lived lives that put me to shame – as I’ve said so many times before the saints of the church and in the pews of the church.

Every Sunday we rush through the words, “I believe in the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins and life everlasting. The communion of saints is all about our oneness with all the members of the church. We used to talk about the church militant, the church suffering and the church triumphant..the communion of saints.

This feast reminds us we are family with all God’s people.

We remember our saints and those who challenged us to be saints –

On this feast, this celebration of all saints we thank God for the many saints who have touched our lives, we thank God for family members and friends who challenge us to be saints, challenge us to be open and loving people, who challenge us to free ourselves from bigotry or narrow mindedness, who challenge us to be people who let past hurts and slights be gone.

Today we thank God for inviting us into this wonderful family that stretches back two thousand years and looks forward to an always better future – this wonderful family not bound by time of space – this communion of saints and those struggling to be saints. This is our family. By the way we struggle to live our own Christian lives may it always be a better family – a family of justice – love and peace