Five Pillars of the Spiritual Life

Saint Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits,... Read more

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Who's In Heaven?

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We've all done it, haven't we? You're going about your day, happen to glance at the calendar, and with a sudden, sinking horror, realize that you're in trouble. So, so much trouble.

You've forgotten. You even marked it down, that birthday, or anniversary, or holiday. You knew it was Valentine's Day — of course you did! How could you forget, what with all the hearts, and pink, and chocolates and roses everywhere? Of course you remembered your own anniversary! Of course you knew it was your child's birthday!

You just remembered a little too late to do anything about it.

Well, the Church, in the infinite wisdom of the Holy Spirit's inspiration, celebrates All Saints Day on Nov. 1 every year to cover just such lapses in memory. We forget, you see, or never hear sometimes about the names of every martyr, every local saint, every person whom the local church absolutely knows without a doubt is in heaven because of their heroic virtue and the power of their intercession. There are many more saints than the Church has ever canonized or will ever canonize because not everyone leaves an obvious trail of evidence for us to find.

Humility and hiddenness are two key traits of holiness, after all. It's no surprise, then, that a lot of saints humbly remain out of sight and out of mind, hidden from the eyes of the world and the Church on earth, though their reward and renown may be great in heaven.

So for all the forgotten saints, all the hidden saints, all those without a religious order or a diocese capable of sustaining their cause of canonization throughout the twists and turns of the process, all those that the Church on earth doesn't even know were members of the Mystical Body of Christ — for the little known and unknown, as well as the well-known saints, All Saints Day is for you.

Let us ask all the holy men and women of heaven to help us join them in eternal communion with the living God. Let us turn to them with trust for all our needs and intentions, as well as those of the Church and the world.

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