All Saints’ Day is the feast of all saints

Posté par diaconos le 30 octobre 2021

La solennité de la Toussaint - Solennité.jpg 330

 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven !

# All Saints’ Day is a Catholic feast day, celebrated on 1 November, during which the Catholic Church honours all saints, known and unknown. The liturgical celebration begins at Vespers on the evening of 31 October and ends at the end of 1 November. It precedes by one day the Commemoration of the Faithful departed, whose solemnity has been officially set for 2 November. Protestants do not worship saints, but some Lutheran churches do celebrate this festival. The Orthodox Churches as well as the Eastern Catholic Churches of the Byzantine rite continue to celebrate All Saints’ Sunday on the Sunday after Pentecost.

Festivals honouring all martyrs existed in the Eastern Churches as early as the fourth century on the Sunday after Pentecost. Today, the Communion of Orthodox Churches still celebrates All Saints’ Sunday on this date. In Rome, in the 5th century, a festival in honour of the saints and martyrs was already celebrated on the Sunday after Pentecost. After the Pantheon in Rome was converted into a sanctuary, Pope Boniface IV consecrated it on 13 May 610 as the Church of St. Mary and the Martyrs. Boniface IV wanted to commemorate all the Christian martyrs whose bodies were honoured in this shrine.

The feast of All Saints was then celebrated on 13 May, the anniversary of the dedication of this church to the martyrs, perhaps also in reference to a feast celebrated by the Syrian Church in the 4th century. It replaced the Lemuria festival of ancient Rome, which was celebrated on this date to ward off evil spectres. The celebration of the Christian feast of All Saints’ Day on 1 November is a Catholic specificity that appeared in the West in the 8th century. Indeed, it may have been from this period that it was celebrated on 1 November, when Pope Gregory III dedicated a chapel in St Peter’s Basilica in Rome to all the saints.

Around 835, Pope Gregory IV ordered that the feast be celebrated throughout Christendom. According to some historians, this decision was the reason why the feast of All Saints’ Day was set for 1 November. On the advice of Gregory IV, the Emperor Louis the Pious instituted the feast of all saints throughout the Carolingian Empire. The celebration of All Saints’ Day was followed locally by an office for the dead as early as the 9th century. In 998, the monks of Cluny instituted a feast of the dead on 2 November, which entered the Roman liturgy as a commemoration of the faithful dead in the 13th century.

 From the Gospel of Matthew

01 When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain. He sat down, and his disciples came to him. 02 Then he opened his mouth and taught them. He said: 03 « Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 04 Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 05 Blessed are the meek, for they will receive the earth as an inheritance. 06 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 07 Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. 08 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 09 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.

10 Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are you if they insult you, persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for my sake. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven. This is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Mt 5, 1-12a)

The Beatitudes

Jesus, having ascended to a high plateau on the mountain, sits down with the crowds lined up around him and solemnly begins the teaching that follows. In eight beatitudes he proclaims happiness and indicates the qualities of those who have a share in the kingdom of the two. They are, first of all, those who aspire to the spiritual goods of this kingdom : the poor in spirit, whose humility puts them in possession of the kingdom ; those who weep, who will find consolation ; those who are meek, who by their meekness will win the earth ; those who hunger and thirst for justice, who will see their ardent desire satisfied. Next are those who possess the dispositions and are in the condition of members of the kingdom: the merciful, who will obtain mercy; those who are pure in heart and will see God ; those who bring peace and will be called sons of God ; those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake and whose reward will be great.

The mountain did not designate any particular summit, but in general the height, as opposed to the plain. Thus the inhabitants of the valleys say: go to the mountain, without indicating by this a special point of the chain of which it is a question. Tradition was more precise than the evangelists ; it placed the mountain of the Beatitudes not far from the city of Tiberias, situated on the edge of the lake of that name. Behind the mountain that dominates Tiberias is a wide plateau, sloping gently upwards towards a rock that forms the summit. It was on this rock that Jesus spent the night in prayer and that at daybreak he called his disciples and chose his apostles.

Then he went down to the crowd that was waiting for him on the plateau and it was from there that he taught the people. According to Luke, Jesus went down and it was in a plain that he gave his speech. According to Matthew, he went up a mountain with the people. Luke reports one more detail: Jesus first went up to the top and then down to the plateau.

At the foot of the rock, at the top of the plateau, there is a small platform, a sort of natural pulpit, from which a large crowd can easily see and hear him. It was from this spot that Jesus sat. His disciples, those of them whom he called to the apostolate and those who had already heard and tasted his word, surrounded him as always.

This discourse, which set forth the spiritual and sublime principles of the kingdom which Jesus came to found, could not be understood by all, nor could it be put into practice except by those who were animated by the spirit of that kingdom; but Jesus spoke and taught with a view to the future. His word was a revelation, and when his work is done, that word will become light and life in the hearts of his redeemed.

Opening his mouth, a Hebraism that indicates the solemnity of the action, the holy freedom of speech. « Here Luke vividly wrote a preface to show how Jesus prepared to preach: he went up a mountain, he sat down, he opened his mouth; this was to make the seriousness of his action felt. » (Luther)

« Many of the thoughts in this discourse are found in the teachings of Jesus and with different applications, which Jesus used more than once, sometimes short moral precepts, which were also to appear in his teachings.   This was a beautiful, gentle, loving entry into the doctrine and preaching of Jesus. He did not proceed, like Moses or a doctor of the law, by commands, threats, or terrors, but in the most affectionate manner, most likely to attract hearts, and by gracious promises. » ( Luther)

Then he went down to the crowd that was waiting for him on the plateau and it was from there that he taught the people. According to Luke, Jesus went down and it was in a plain that he gave his speech. According to Matthew, he went up a mountain with the people. Luke reports one more detail: Jesus first went up to the top and then down to the plateau.

At the foot of the rock, at the top of the plateau, there is a small platform, a sort of natural pulpit, from which a large crowd can easily see and hear him. It was from this spot that Jesus sat. His disciples, those of them whom he called to the apostolate and those who had already heard and tasted his word, surrounded him as always. This discourse, which set forth the spiritual and sublime principles of the kingdom which Jesus came to found, could not be understood by all, nor could it be put into practice except by those who were animated by the spirit of that kingdom; but Jesus spoke and taught with a view to the future. His word was a revelation, and when his work is done, that word will become light and life in the hearts of his redeemed.

Opening his mouth, a Hebraism that indicates the solemnity of the action, the holy freedom of speech. « Here Luke vividly wrote a preface to show how Jesus prepared to preach: he went up a mountain, he sat down, he opened his mouth; this was to make the seriousness of his action felt. » (Luther)

« Many of the thoughts in this discourse are found in the teachings of Jesus and with different applications, which Jesus used more than once, sometimes short moral precepts, which were also to appear in his teachings.   This was a beautiful, gentle, loving entry into the doctrine and preaching of Jesus. He did not proceed, like Moses or a doctor of the law, by commands, threats, or terrors, but in the most affectionate manner, most likely to attract hearts, and by gracious promises. » ( Luther)

However, this love had a deep seriousness about it, for those whom Jesus declared to be happy were very miserable in the world. They were happy only because of the promise that accompanied each of these declarations and motivated them. The poor in spirit are those who feel poor in their inner life, morally and spiritually poor, and thus long for the true riches of the soul (the spirit being the faculty by which we enter into relationship with God and realise the moral life). This feeling of poverty before God is not yet repentance, but a deep, painful humility that leads to it.

The poor in spirit are all those whose minds are detached from the goods of the earth, as Bossuet said and added : « O Lord! I give you everything: I abandon everything to have a share in this kingdom! I strip myself of heart and spirit, and when it pleases you to strip me indeed, I submit to it » (Meditations on the Gospel). Thus understood, the first beatitude of Matthew responded to the first beatitude of Luke and did not have a meaning almost identical to that of the fourth beatitude: « Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for justice ». Whether it be spiritual poverty or temporal poverty, humility or detachment, or both, such a situation is answered by the promise, or rather the positive and present declaration: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

 Those who weep, or who mourn, or who are sad, will be comforted, because this sadness brings them to the source of forgiveness, peace, life. This gentleness, this surrender to God’s will, in the presence of violence, injustice and hatred, is produced in them by a humble and saddened sense of what they lack. It implies the renunciation of the advantages and joys of this world; but, by a magnificent compensation, those who practise it will inherit the land. The land of promise, Canaan, is taken in its spiritual sense and signifies the homeland above, the kingdom of God, the possession of which is assured to those who are meek. « The world uses force to possess the land; Jesus teaches us that it is won by gentleness » (Luther)

This hunger and thirst for spiritual goods which they lack, for the true inner justice of which they feel deprived, for a life in conformity with God’s will, is born in them from the dispositions of an ardent desire for life, which often recurs in Scripture. Every soul that experiences this before God will be satisfied, satisfied with justice, since it is of justice that it hungers and thirsts. The subsequent revelations of the Gospel will teach him how he will achieve this. The merciful are those who do not think only of their own misery, but who sympathise with the misery of their brothers. One must have felt one’s own misery, have suffered oneself, to be able to sympathise with the suffering of others. One must have been the object of God’s infinite love in order to be able to love others and practice charity towards them.

This is the double thought that links this beatitude to the previous ones. It is also linked to them by the consideration that those whom Jesus calls to the happiness of his disciples will still need to obtain mercy on the day of the supreme judgement, for although they will be assured of the kingdom of heaven, although they will be comforted and filled with justice, there will still be many shortcomings and imperfections in their lives that need to be covered. They will be forgiven and shown mercy as they have shown mercy.

The heart is, according to Scripture, the organ of the moral life. To be pure of heart is, in contrast to external works, to be free from all defilement, from all falsehood, from all injustice, from all malice in this intimate centre of thoughts and feelings. This is not the moral state of the natural man.  As each promise corresponds to the disposition described in each of these beatitudes, those who are pure in heart are happy, because they will live in His communion while they are alive, and will one day immediately contemplate Him in the supreme beauty of His perfections, the inexhaustible source of heavenly bliss.

Those who are not only peaceful themselves, but who, having found peace, endeavour to procure it for others and to restore it among men, where it is disturbed. They are happy, because they will be called by that sweet and glorious title: sons of God. This title expresses a profound reality; for as these sons of God bring peace, they have a likeness to their Father who is « the God of peace » Romans 16:20; 2 Corinthians 13:11, they act according to His Spirit. Therefore they are sons of God, but moreover they will be called such, their title will be recognised by God and by all.

 Because of righteousness, those who are persecuted are blessed, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. In the eighth beatitude, Jesus returned to the first. He thus closes a harmonic cycle of experiences and promises. The first four concern those who seek in their deepest need, the last four those who have found and are already developing some activity in the kingdom of God. Each promise, the source of happiness responding exactly and abundantly to each state of soul described, shines a ray of the glory of the kingdom of heaven: to the afflicted, consolation; to the meek, possession of the earth; to the hungry, satiation; to the merciful, mercy; to the pure in heart, the sight of God; to those who give peace, the title of children of God.

 But in the first and last beatitudes, Jesus, who is the Master of the kingdom of heaven, dispensed it entirely to the poor and the persecuted; and there alone He spoke in the present tense: « This kingdom is theirs. The reward, which in no way weakens the truth of salvation by grace through faith, is great in proportion to the faithfulness and love with which the disciples of Jesus suffered for His name. However, no Christian seeks this reward apart from God and the happiness of serving him, otherwise he would lose what makes it great and sweet.

Deacon Michel Houyoux

Links to other Christian sites

◊ BBC Religionq : click here to read the paper → Christianity : All Saints’ Day and All .Souls’ Day

◊ triviasharp.com  : click here to read the paper → All Saints Day 2021: Facts About the Feast of All Saints

The Feast of All Saints

Image de prévisualisation YouTube

Laisser un commentaire

Votre adresse de messagerie ne sera pas publiée. Les champs obligatoires sont indiqués avec *

Vous pouvez utiliser ces balises et attributs HTML : <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

 

Salem alikoum |
Eazy Islam |
Josue |
Unblog.fr | Annuaire | Signaler un abus | AEP Gresivaudan 4ieme 2007-08
| Une Paroisse virtuelle en F...
| VIENS ECOUTE ET VOIS