November 1, 2023
Matthew 5: 1-12a
What is the meaning of life to you/us?
Who among us does not desire to meet face-to-face Saint Julie and our ancestors in Notre Dame whom we so cherish?
I have a conviction that our early Christians attempted to evangelize culture and since the culture I belong to (the African Culture) has existed for more than two centuries, I believe that the theology of the communion of saints is coherent with this very important belief in Africa; an ancestor system of beliefs which satisfies us that those gone before us are constantly present to us and intercede for us to the good God.
There are many men and women who contributed to the Catholic Church of whom some are recognized as saints and some are in the process of becoming, while others remain anonymous.
Kenyans are known for the world championship in Marathon. Those champions practice every day without failure. Today we remember all the saints as people who have run and won their races. We recognize their sainthood and affirm that they are indeed in Heaven with God, hearing our needs and interceding for us who are still on earth and cheering us to reach the finishing line without turning back.
In the Gospel of today, the principal note of embracing the reign of God is “blessedness.” Jesus shares with us the pass-code of sanctity which is revealed in the beatitudes. Jesus also challenges our normal way of looking at things and invites all humanity to belong to the blessed groups of beatitudes and experience God’s grace since the reign of God has come near. These beatitudes progress in intensity from the blessedness of the poor in spirit to persecution because of righteousness.
Jesus is asking us to come to him with an understanding of how destitute we are in spirit and invites us to live like All Saints who live with God and who are known for their heroic sanctity and who are now enjoying the presence of the good God. These are men and women who struggled with similar problems we have and even worse, and yet remained rooted in faith and Jesus became their center of focus. Today, we celebrate them as models of human excellence.
As Paul encourages us, “… I can do all things in him who strengthens me…,” Let us be aware of the support we have from God and a crowd of witnesses in Heaven. Let us also lay aside everything that hinders us from continually saying YES to God’s will in our lives.
As we celebrate All Saints, the beatitudes teach us to become more like God, reflect the goodness and the beauty in the Sacred Heart of Jesus and ask Saint Julie Billiart and All Saints to pray for us to live a life of sanctity as we hope that someday, we too will join them in heaven.
Matthew 5: 1-12a
When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain, and after he had sat down, his disciples came to him. He began to teach them, saying:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me. Rejoice and be glad,
for your reward will be great in heaven.”
The Gospel of the Lord
Meet Sister Everlyne Nekesa Oguba, SNDdeN