Sunday, November 3, 2013

Communion of Saints

As we commemorated All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day yesterday and the day before, we reflected on the fact that we are all members of the Communion of Saints. The word "saint" comes from the Latin "sanctus" which means holy. In the early Church, Christians were considered holy by virtue of their Baptisms. They remained as such as long as this state of holiness was not ended by deadly sin willfully committed. 

Baptism not only removes original sin but also incorporates one into the Body of Christ which is the Church. The life of God is infused into the soul at Baptism. We truly become His daughters and sons. So, as long as the Divine Life, which we call grace, is in our souls, we can be called saints.

We the saints on earth were formerly called the church militant because we are involved in the struggle against evil and the temptation to commit sin. Those in purgatory are called the church suffering for obvious reasons. They are being cleansed of unforgiven venial sins and the residue of forgiven mortal sins. Of course, the souls in heaven are saints in the traditional way we think of them with the Beatific Vision.

We are all brothers and sisters whether we are here, in purgatory or in heaven. Love means that we want the best for others. That's why we pray for each other. We certainly can count on the souls in purgatory and those in heaven to pray for us.

Father Stanley

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