Ut In Omnibus Glorificetur Deus
THAT IN ALL THINGS GOD MAY BE GLORIFIED
We are coming to the end of the liturgical year, and so our thoughts turn to the end times. St Benedict in his Holy Rule tells us that we should always keep death before our eyes. Keeping death before us, should mean that we can live better lives.
We often struggle in every way possible to stay young and to pretend that we are young. Others of us seem to embrace getting old, sometimes before old age has even come upon us. I know that I have got younger as I have got older. For most of us, getting older is simply a part of living to be accepted. The point of the reading today is that part of getting older is being prepared to die and to meet the Lord. We need to ask ourselves: “Am I ready to meet the Lord right now?” If I am not, then I had better begin the work to prepare myself!
0900 Morning Prayer
1000 PARISH MASS
The poppy has became a symbol of Remembrance of all those who have been killed on active service, particularly the two World Wars. Today we remember them, not to glorify war and conflict, but to give thanks for them in particular and to pray for peace with justice throughout our world.
We donate and wear our poppies, but our remembrance needs to be based not only in the past but the present. The work of the British Legion is involved in a practical active remembrance of helping those, who have been on active service and are now in need. The return of Service personal to civilian life can be very difficult even for those not physically injured. The psychological struggle, with memories of what they have seen and what they have been a part of can often lead to alcoholism, depression, other mental health issues and living rough.
We, as Jesus followers are called to love and care for one another, in our community here at All Saints, and not just here, but amongst our family and friends, our society, our world. We are called to do what he commands and to love one another. Love we know can be enriching and life giving, it also can be costly as we stand up for what we know is true and what we believe is right. Following Jesus, means being prepared to stand up for what we know to be just, not only for ourselves but for others in our world.
0900 Morning Prayer
1000 SOLEMN REQUIEM & ACT OF REMEMBRANCE
Today we continue our celebration of all the saints, the great cloud of witnesses that surround us, and intercede for us day and night before the throne.
0900 Morning Prayer
1000 PARISH MASS - Preacher The Archdeacon of Middlesex
Today we remember those who have passed from this life with faith, hope and trust in the promise of eternal life. Yesterday we remembered all the saints but today reflect upon those who we know, those who have been part of out lives. Life is a gift from God and nothing that God gives or does is ever wasted. It’s about being a child of God.
Our lives are a reflection of God and his love. Those who have died whom we remember today somehow reflected that love. The dead are never completely gone, they in some way, still live in us. Whether one month, six months, a year, 10 or even 50 years…they live on in our minds and hearts. They have touched us, formed us and changed us. But also know that we have touched them, formed them and changed them. Our love for them is what helps them through life and into eternal life. The bonds of humanity are not broken by death. We remember them and they still remember us while enjoying the fruits of eternal life. Their love for us helps us with this life as we journey to eternal life. Sadness, sorrow, grief may fill us today, but that is a reminder of their presence and love in our lives.
Our loved ones’ journeys are complete and their lives made whole. We are all born to be saints. However, it takes a lifetime to become a saint. How we use our lives is what helps us on that journey to sainthood. The struggles and trials of life often leave us wounded. Too often, we have excess baggage that clings to us or even nags us throughout our lives. After a journey, we are often sweaty and need of a shower. God cleans us up as we pass from this life to the next. God created us good, or as said in Genesis very good, but he did not create us perfect. All those faults and imperfections that we carry are perfected by God. Our souls are purified and are made worthy to stand in the presence of God. All those sacrifices, sufferings and good works do not go unnoticed by God. God turns the good into perfect.
All souls day can touch us personally. Yes, it can be a day of mixed emotions. It is our day to remember, to miss, but also to be joyful. We reflect on our own existence. Each of us is a soul…a soul on its journey. We are still walking on that journey to become all that we were meant to be – a child of God enjoying eternal life with him.
1900 SOLEMN REQUIEM
All Saints' Day is a solemn holy day of the Catholic Church celebrated annually on November 1. The day is dedicated to the saints of the Church, that is, all those who have attained heaven. It should not be confused with All Souls' Day, which is observed on November 2, and is dedicated to those who have died and not yet reached heaven.
Millions, or even billions of people may already be saints, All Saints' Day observances focuses on those unknown saints as well as those recognized in the canon of the saints by the Church.
When you look at something like the Catechism and see its many pages, or look at the 2,000 pages of the big Jerusalem Bible, you can be forgiven for thinking that Christianity is a complicated affair. But Jesus reminds us today that it is essentially very simple: everything can be summed up in two basic rules: love God, love your neighbour. Exodus backs this up, by talking about the simple love that we must show to each other. Not that this is easy - love is always costly, and involves some degree of sacrifice. We will have to change, to become perfect in love; but it is possible, and when we do, like the people of Thessalonica, we become a great example to people everywhere.
The November edition of the Magazine is available below to download.
Everyone on this earth belongs to God. All are made in his image. Therefore it is right that all men and women, ‘from the rising to the setting of the sun’, should know the God to whom they belong. The only desire of our God is that all should know and love him, and find in him the fulfilment that they seek. Even a pagan king like Cyrus is used to further this knowledge of God - just as Jesus uses Caesar’s head to make the point again: all belong to God, and the mission of all who acknowledge that belonging is to help others to find it. This is exactly what we see Paul, Silvanus and Timothy doing, as they write to the people of Thessalonica, to whom they carried the Good News of Jesus Christ.
The Church’s year is drawing to a close: in a few weeks we will be thinking very clearly about the end of time - but here we have a preview. The parable of the banquet is a link between the Gospels of recent weeks (which have as their theme: ‘Just who is going to be saved?’) and the looking forward to the end times which will follow. The big danger is complacency: we are baptised, we go to Church, we’ve got our invites to the wedding. But when the big day comes, will we be ready for it? Or will our thoughts be on the other things of life? Jesus speaks of himself as the Bridegroom, and today points out to the chosen people that they are in danger of missing the celebration. Our faith is that the Bridegroom will come again; let us be careful that the same parable is not addressed to us.
We can never hope fully to understand God: especially God's generosity. We are very good at working out who is deserving of good fortune and who is not - unfortunately for us, Gods gifts go to those God chooses, not those we choose. An example is forgiveness: those who have done the most wrong are those who receive the greatest forgiveness when they turn to God - perhaps at times we begrudge this gift. Todays lesson is simply this: God's ways are not our ways, God's thought are not our thoughts.
October's magazine is available for download below.
Let begin by debunking a myth that seems to do the rounds especially when someone dies. People do not become angels when they die! People are not suddenly given wings and float around clouds playing harps!
So what are angels?
An angel is a pure spirit created by God. The Old Testament theology included the belief in angels: the name applied to certain spiritual beings or intelligences of heavenly residence, employed by God as the ministers of His will.
The English word "angel" comes from the Greek angelos, which means 'messenger'. In the Old Testament, with two exceptions, the Hebrew word for "angel" is malak, also meaning 'messenger'. The prophet Malachi took his name from this word. He was himself a messenger, and he prophesied about the coming of "the messenger of the covenant", Jesus Christ.
Suprisingly we know quite a lot about angels, some even have names. Like the ones we celebrate today.
Michael – “who is like God” - the great Warrior angel who we hear about in the book of the Revelation.
Raphael – the healer – who we find about in the lovely book of Tobit.
Gabriel – the one who brings the message of the Coming of the Messiah to Mary.
We are also told that it is the Angels who worship God continually before his face. We have a foretaste of this in our own worship at Mass – If you want to find a biblical picture of the Mass – read the book of Revelation.
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