Thursday, November 01, 2018
November 2, 2018 – FRIDAY, All Souls
November 2, 2018 – FRIDAY, All Souls
Commemoration of All The Faithful Departed
Wis 3: 1 - 9 / Rom 5: 5 - 11 / Jn 6: 37 – 40
Rooted in ancient Christian tradition from the second century, St. Odilo of Cluny (962 - 1049) established a commemoration of all the faithful departed in 988, which was accepted in Rome in the 13th century.
2ND READING: Rom 5: 5 -11
Hope does not disappoint us because the Holy Spirit has been given to us, pouring into our hearts the love of God.
Consider, moreover, the time that Christ died for us: when we were still sinners and unable to do anything. Few would accept to die for an upright person; although, for a very good person, perhaps someone would dare to die. But see how God manifested his love for us: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us and we have become just through his blood. With much more reason now he will save us from any condemnation.
Once enemies, we have been reconciled with God through the death of his Son; with much more reason now we may be saved through his life. Not only that; we feel secure in God because of Christ Jesus, our Lord, through whom we have been reconciled.
GOSPEL READING: Jn 6: 37- 40
Jesus said, "All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me, I shall not turn away. For I have come from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of the One who sent me.
"And the will of him who sent me is that I lose nothing of what he has given me, but instead that I raise it up on the last day.. This is the will of the Father, that whoever sees the Son and believes in him shall live with eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day."
The second reading declares that hope does not disappoint. We can also add that faith and trust do not disappoint. Because the basis of this hope, faith and trust that Paul talks about is the love of God that has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit. Because the love of God has been poured into all of us, and, in spite of our sins, we have been reconciled to God through the death of his Son.
In the Gospel reading, the same is affirmed: "All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me, I shall not turn away." And Jesus adds, "And the will of him who sent me is that I lose nothing of what he has given me, but instead that I raise it up on the last day."
Many people think that there are many ifs, buts and conditions attached to these assertions.. The answer is a clear "No." God's love is poured out into all of us, into each one of us, regardless of race, creed, sex and gender orientation. God's love is generous, boundless, unlimited, filled with compassionate mercy. God's love is not just full: it runs over, filled to the brim and overflowing.
We can include a REFLECTION regarding God's prohibition to Adam and Eve not to eat the fruit of the tree of good and evil. God made the prohibition because he has reserved to himself the right to be the final arbiter of good and evil. God arrogates to himself the right to finally determine what is good and what is evil. Nobody else has this right.
If we put together the good news that Jesus will not reject anyone, that God's will is to save everyone and that God is the final arbiter of good and evil, we should indeed be filled with firm and genuine hope, faith and trust regarding our salvation.
Do we truly believe this? If we do, we can begin to appreciate the Church's commemoration today of All the Faithful Departed: that God's plan is for all to be saved and that we should then all live with faith, trust and hope in his great love and mercy. For indeed with God's grace nothing is impossible.
Have a good day!
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