Gospel Reflection for All Saints Day: November 1, 2015
Malvern Minute

 

ALL SAINTS DAY

NOVEMBER 1, 2015

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened,

and I will give you rest, says the Lord.

Alleluia, Alleluia.

The Gospel of Saint Matthew 5: 1-12

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain, and after he had sat down, his disciples came to him.  He began to teach them, saying:

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.


Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness,
for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.  Rejoice and be glad,
for your reward will be great in heaven.”

The Gospel of the Lord

 

REFLECTION

The month of November is a special time of year to REMEMBER:

-Our Divine Call that we received in Baptism to be a saint through a Life of Holiness (All Saints Day); and

-Our Faithful Departed who even now are being transformed into the Holiness of God (All Souls Day).

With our lives filled with rushing from one thing to another, and running through one day after another, it is easy to become confused and feel that our lives have lost direction and purpose.  This month helps us to reorient ourselves.   It is an opportunity to reflect on the true meaning of life and eternal life.  Pope Benedict XVI explains the nature of our Saintly Calling from Christ:

To become saints means to fulfill completely what we already are, raised to the dignity of God’s adopted children in Christ Jesus.  There is no isolation in heaven.  It is the open society of the saints and consequently, also the fulfillment of all human togetherness …   One might say that the saints are, so to speak, new Christian constellations, in which the richness of God’s goodness is reflected.  Their light, coming from God, enables us to know better the interior richness of God’s great light.  Nothing can bring us into close contact with the beauty of Christ himself other than the world of beauty created by faith and light that shines out from the faces of the saints, through whom His own light becomes visible.

The beautiful stain glass windows that adorn our churches dramatically testify to what the Pope is saying.  The light of the sun shines through the glass creating a vivid image of the person in the glass.   When witnessing this splendid event on a beautiful sunny day, our faith tells us what is really happening: the light of the Son of God shines through the life of saintly disciples.   In turn, we are encouraged to allow the Light of Christ to shine through us.   All Saints Day proclaims that countless numbers of disciples of every age, people of all sizes and ways of life, men, women and children, even those whose names are forgotten by history, are elevated by God to the rank of saint because each one in his/her own way allowed Christ’s light and life to shine through them.

Through the Beatitudes of Matthew’s Gospel, we learn the master plan of how to imitate the holy and saintly life of Jesus Christ.  By imitating Christ, Christ transforms us into living images of Himself.  This path to holiness is the way of the Beatitudes – the ways of blessedness:

Blessed are the poor in spiritBe humble – realize all your gifts come from God;

Blessed are they who mourn – Mourn for your sins and cry out for God’s mercy;

Blessed are the meek – Be gentile, kind to others, and obedient to God and His ways;

Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness – Do to others what you   would have them do to you, and seek the perfection of Christ;

Blessed are the merciful – Forgive others as Christ has forgiven you;

Blessed are the clean of heart – Be free of selfishness and give only good to others;

Blessed are the peacemakers – Be compassionate and forgiving; this conveys peace;

Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousnesswhen they insult you … because of meFor if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection (Roman 6:5).

The ways of holiness are difficult; indeed, they are impossible if one attempts them on his/her own.  However, with God all things are possible.   By surrendering into his care, God will transform us into His saints – His holy people!

WE BELIEVE, AND THEREFORE SPEAK (2 Corinthians 4:13)

Consider joining the Men and Women of Malvern by deepening your personal relationship with Jesus and your commitment as a disciple through a weekend retreat.  See our website for details: MalvernRetreat.com

 

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