Being an artist means, not reckoning and counting, but ripening like the tree which does not force its sap and stands confident in the storms of spring without the fear that after them may come no summer. It does come. But it comes only to the patient, who are there as though eternity lay before them, so unconcernedly still and wide. I learn it daily, learn it with pain to which I am grateful: patience is everything!
– Rainer Maria Rilke
In our Christian tradition, the eve of a feast is the beginning of the celebration of that feast. Today is Halloween, or originally, All Hallows Eve – the evening before All Saints Day – October 31st. On All Saints Day – November 1st– we remember all those faithful women and men who have died, but never received “official” recognition that their lives were holy. Truly, all of us are holy . . . all of us are saints.
We can recall that wonderful song, “When the Saints Go Marching In.” Those words are our hope, “O, Lord, I want to be in that number, when the saints go marching in!” The other feast we celebrate at this time is All Souls Day, sometimes known as The Day of the Dead – November 2nd– when we remember those who have died, and hold them in our prayers.
So for this these three days, we celebrate three feasts that remember all those who have died, and we are reminded that we too will die. Our faith in the resurrection gives us confidence in the joyful communion we will share with those we have loved when we are fully united with our loving God.