All Saints Day: Heroes and Heroines of the Faith

The aspect that I like and can relate to about All Saints Day is that the church comes together on this special day of remembrance to remember the saints and martyrs who have sacrificed their lives in the call of service to Jesus and towards their faith. Saints after all were common people just like you and me, and they too made mistakes but in the end, they made amends and influenced people to be like them. They hoped that through their actions and influence, people will follow them and today, the world continues to pray to the saints and seek their  intercession.

I always look forward to the gospel reading as it is a comforting and yet meaningful passage of trying to lead us to a more righteous life in preparing for the heavenly reward. Jesus begin to teach the disciples by saying:

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

“Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.

Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so men persecuted the prophets who were before you”(Matthew 5:1-2A). 

As I reflect on this passage, this is my conversation with God:

Jesus, I have made mistakes and I am not proud of them. Sometimes, I feel no happiness due to life’s many expectations and tasks but I know that you alone are sufficient. You watch and guide me throughout my life and I am grateful each passing week that you are with me, telling me to move forward, one small step at a time.

At times, I feel scared and intimidated by the work and people around me, but you always tell me to have patience and determination. I am to just do my best, to finish the work and to pray more. I pray on my way back home after a long day and I know you hear my countless prayers and answer them in one way or another.

Through these beatitudes, I have found that even though I may lack a certain skill or talent, you always comfort me in telling me that I lack nothing and that your love and mercy shown unto me is all that matters.

Soon, I realise that I do start to pray more to St Salvatore of Horta, (my Confirmation  name and my patron saint) and  that, even though life might get a bit darker from time to time, I still can find light around me through service to people and creation.

Oh Holy Saint, St Salvatore-

“I ask you for your help
Heal me, my soul and my heart
Help me to become like you
Give me the strength so that                                                                                         I may tell people about you no matter what they think
Let me continue spreading the beliefs of God as you do
May every person believe in God for he gives us hope
Hope for everything in our lives
May we never be alone after being healed by you
Heal all the weak, wounded, blind and any person in need of healing.
Amen”

Also here is a pumpkin story for sharing: “What is it like to be a Christian saint?”

“It is like being a Halloween pumpkin. God picks you from the field, brings you in, and washes all the dirt off you. Then he cuts off the top and scoops out the yucky stuff. He removes the pulp of impurity and injustice and seeds of doubt, hate, and greed. Then He carves you a new smiling face and puts His light of holiness inside you to shine for the entire world to see.”

This is the Christian idea behind the carved pumpkins during the Halloween season.”

Let us follow the footsteps of the saints in looking up to them as our heroes and heroines and yet emulating them and praying with them that our prayers and longings in our hearts might be answered today! God Bless.

Written By: Darren Chan Keng Leong

 

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