Homily for All Souls Day 2022 by Fr. Joe Tedesco
Lamentations 3: 17 – 26; Romans 8: 31b- 35, 37- 39; John 6: 37- 40
All life is cyclical, the Sun rises and goes down day after day, there are 4 seasons like clockwork.
We know when summer starts etc. There is birth and death.
So, in faith we see this cyclical pattern as well. We see it in our life and death and as we enter into our new life, eternal life in Christ. We celebrate this death to new life cycle of our faith life every November 2nd. And we need to, so that, we are clear on what our whole life is about as we live our life in Christ.
We are in touch with the very life of God, the will of God, God’s desire manifested so wondrously in Christ’s new life for us. Yes, there is incarnation, a true birth into life, God’s life, and we all experience life and like Christ we experience death of our human life. But and here’s the mystery of God’s life and love manifested so profoundly in Jesus, and in us. After our bodily death, there is new life in the spirit given to each of us. The Gospel of John this morning names it and this word is a great consolation. Because these words imply the universal nature of this grace – no one who comes will I ever reject.
This life also has a cycle. This new life after death will be transformed into resurrected life on the last day. When the Kingdom of God is fulfilled. When all is one in God through Christ. We have the same hope so powerfully expressed in Lamentation: the hope of God’s love and power to restore us.
In the meantime, we honor the spirit life in all those who have died and pray for that life to be at peace for each of them. That in their way they are experiencing God’s love. Whether it is still in process or complete as our faith tells us, is part of the judgement of God, who we know is full of mercy and love for each of us. Nothing can separate us from the love of God that comes to us in Christ Jesus our Lord.
So, in real faith day by day, we surrender our lives into the hands of God. And we feel the great gift of connection with all those who have gone before us. It’s all like a royal procession to the throne of God, this spiritual life we live from baptism to new life in Christ. We celebrate those already at the Throne of God, and those on the way and those of us living spirit life together here, in the mystical body of Christ on earth.
So, we celebrate this feast of All Souls – to make this deeper connection especially with our own loved ones, we are all part of this cycle of the mystical body of Christ.
So, we pray, may the souls of all the departed through the mercy of God rest in peace.