As we end Respect Life month and approach the Solemnity of All Saints, we recognize the immeasurable dignity of human life. Although all the saints are of every different ages, from the Holy Innocents to St. John Paul II, all have the same dignity and are loved by God with the utmost intensity.
The saints are such a special part of our spiritual life. We certainly do feel a connection to them even though we do not know them personally. Yet, there are some people who have had personal relationships with them such as St. John Paul II and St. Mother Teresa. In recent times, Popes have canonized so many saints as an encouragement for all of us to strive for holiness.
The saints give us that inspiration that we too can live for Jesus. They didn’t place their trust in themselves but in God’s grace. In times of great affliction, they believed that the Father would provide for them as a good father always does for his loving children. The saints knew that they were weak and by God’s grace they were transformed by the absolute mercy of Jesus Christ.
How precious it is to cultivate devotion to the saints. By their prayers and witness they help us to be more holy and zealous disciples of the Lord.
The names of the faithful departed who died this year from St. Barnabas will be read at the All Souls Mass on November 2, 2021 at 7:00 PM. The Imitation of Christ says when Mass is offered rest is given to the departed. The greatest act of love we can offer to them is to offer Mass for their souls.
You may have noticed our new votive candles. It is a great joy to my heart to see so many of them being used and offered to God. How often we say to people that “I lit a candle for you.” It is a sign that one was there and prayed. It is good to see St. Joseph have his votive candles back. I am sure many will lite candles by him especially this month since he is the patron saint of a holy death.
Onward and upward, we go towards the Kingdom of Heaven.
In Jesus and Mary,
Fr. Jeff Yildirmaz