From our pastor, Father Neil Herlihy:
On Friday, November 1st, we celebrated All Saints Day. Our Church recognizes All Saints Day as a Holy Day of Obligation which reflects its importance. We remember in a very special way on this day the many saints who have come before us, holy men and women marked with the sign of faith.
As Catholics we are invited to follow the example of our great saints. We are invited to model our behavior after them and follow their holy way of life. We are challenged to learn from them and to learn more about them.
I suggest we consider spending just twenty minutes one day per month with our families reading a brief biographical sketch of one particular saint. It could be a sketch about well known saints such as St. Paul or St. Patrick or about Pope John Paul II who will soon be canonized a saint. It could be a sketch about American saints such as St. Katherine Drexel or St. Elizabeth Ann Seton. It is amazing what we can learn about ourselves from these summaries about our saints. We can obtain these biographical sketches from books of the saints or from the Internet. Although the Internet is not always the most reliable source for information, its summaries of the saints are usually essentially accurate. We would be well served to be more interested in the actions of our saints and less interested in the actions of Hollywood celebrities and sports stars.
On Saturday, November 2nd, we commemorated All Souls Day. It is a day to honor and pray for all souls. We especially pray for our deceased relatives, friends, neighbors, parishioners, co-workers, and all who shared their lives with us. In addition, on Thursday, November 7, we will celebrate a Mass of Remembrance. We will honor the memory of our loved ones who have died, especially those who have died recently. A litany of names and an offering of roses with appropriate lighting of candles will mark this special occasion.
This month, we may thank the Lord for our loved ones who came before us. We may also thank Him for all our wonderful saints. We can continue to seek the intercession of our saints as we pray for the guidance and wisdom we need to continue on our own journey of faith.