We celebrate The Feast of All Saints this weekend. (We actually celebrated in the middle of the past week, but like most preachers, I’ve transferred the readings and the observance of the Feast to this Sunday.) All Saints historically falls on the first day of new year according to oldest calendars we have from Northern Europe. It’s a hinge between the final harvest days and beginning of the bitter cold.
This two-fold aspect to the season and Feast, mirrors an important truth about the lives the great Saints of the Church. It’s easy to remember the great deeds that the Saints accomplished in their lifetimes and to celebrate what they accomplished. But if we just do that we miss half the story. If you get a chance to read the writings of the Saints, at least the ones that we have managed to preserve, you can also hear of the great sufferings they endured and struggles that they experienced – even in their own beliefs about who God is and what God wants from us in our lives.
It’s that two fold aspect of the lives of the Saints that I explore in the sermon, inspired by the two differing versions we have the appointed Gospel reading for this weekend.
(You can find a direct link to the sermon video here.)