About this time last year, in a casual conversation my wife asked why in the Philippines we commemorate All Saints Day on November 1 while All Souls Day is observed on November 2. I answered and dismissed the question with a simple, “I don’t know.”
As we are about to observe these two holidays this year, I did a little quick research and let me share some information I have gleaned.
All Saints Day is observed mostly by praying for the departed saints which begs the question of what or who is a saint. A bishop in Sweden defined saints as those who make it easier to believe in God. In his letters to the Corinthians, Ephesians and Philippians, Paul writes and includes any one who named Jesus is Lord as a saint. In the Wesleyan (Methodist) tradition, a saint is anyone who has received the grace of justification which is the first step to salvation. John Wesley acknowledges that all of us are dead spiritually from the original sin simply because we are born into the family of Adam, rather than from sinning. He further asserts that justification is the pardoning of our sin by our loving God, making us
righteous and just before Him. This step is followed by sanctification and then glorification.
After the All Saints Day, we observe All Souls Day on November 2 as we remember and pray for our faithfully departed whether they are considered saints or not. In his blog, Andrew Jones writes that “This is more of a Roman Catholic holiday because it requires a belief of Purgatory to fully participate. The celebration is associated with the doctrine that the souls of the faithful who at death have not been cleansed from the temporal punishment due to venial sins cannot attain the beatific vision in heaven, and that they may be helped to do so by prayer and by the sacrifice of the Mass.”
Whatever religious leanings we have, it is notable that celebrating these two holidays evokes many happy and memorable moments when our beloved who departed were still alive and with us. It is commendable that we remember and pray for them.
What is your answer to the simple question above? Do you think we can honor and love them more when we make a pledge or donation to the CLSUIAG Endowment Fund? Doing this in loving memory of a father, mother, brother, sister, spouse or any loved one is an easy way to leave a good legacy to our posterity. It is perhaps the best way to acknowledge with gratitude and pride that CLAS/CLAC/CLSU, our beloved Alma Mater has helped us immensely and molded us into what we are today. Please see Page 12 and listen to what your heart says.
Thank You !