Reflection for SOLEMNITY OF ALL SAINTS, week beginning 31 October 2021
As this Rosary month ends, we reach the 4th and final set of its 4 sets of Mysteries: the Glorious. The 1st is the Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus from the dead – the resurrection from the dead being the central tenet of our Catholic Faith. (St. Paul has reminded us that, were there no resurrection from the dead, there would be nothing left for us in which to put our faith). We can but wonder at the immense joy of Our Lady upon encountering her Risen Son. We can but marvel at the joy of the apostles in having Jesus remain with them for 40 days after his Resurrection. He had to leave them at his Ascension – the 2nd Glorious Mystery. In his final words, he directs them to preach the Good News near and far, and to baptise in the Name of the Holy Trinity. He has returned to God the Father to open for us the gates of Heaven. He had promised not to leave his own as orphans. Thus, the Descent of the Holy Spirit is the 3rd Glorious Mystery. The Holy Spirit is the very love that is God, the great mutual love between God the Father and God the Son. We received him first at our Baptism, and later at our Confirmation. He is the presence of God within us. The 4th Glorious Mystery is the Assumption of Our Blessed Lady into Heaven, body and soul. As she was the Immaculate Conception (the only human never to have been marked with the mark of Original Sin on the soul), death would not have been called for from her – instead she was taken up to Heaven from a bodily sleep. In the 5th & final Glorious Mystery, we see her crowned as Queen of Heaven, where she is the glory of all the saints. On this Sunday’s solemn feast of All Saints, we profoundly thank God for the gift to us of the saints. They are our intercessors in Heaven. Where they have gone before us, it is our destiny to follow. In November, the month of the Holy Souls, let us pray for the eternal repose of those who have gone before us. When they reach Heaven, they will more than return this favour for us.