October leaves and November enters the scene…
The last weekend of Respect Life month, we are praying for victims of Domestic violence and human trafficking. It is against the commandment of love. The violence against another person is a failure to treat that person as someone worthy of love. An article from United State Bishop’s says, “We focus here on violence against women, since 85 percent of the victims of reported cases of non-lethal domestic violence are women. Women's greatest risk of violence comes from intimate partners—a current or former husband or boyfriend.”
Today human trafficking is new form of slavery. United Bishop’s Conference says, “Human trafficking violates the sanctity, dignity, and fundamental rights of the human person.” They state that every nation is affected by this disease—the United States is no exception. We all are called to love God and love one another. It is the essence of our discipleship. The month of October, we were reflecting and praying, especially through the devotion to the Rosary, on the dignity of human life from the womb to tomb.
The reading talks about love: Love God and Love One another. In the first reading from the book of Deuteronomy, Moses’ introduction of the Law and presenting the law and asking them to follow the law. This passage contains the greatest law, since the Lord alone is the God, the Israelites must love him with an undivided heart. Because this passage contains the greatest commandment, it is called “Shema” in Hebrew. The ‘Shema’ serves as the “creed” of Judaism. The words of “Shema”: “Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone!” was part of a Jew’s morning and evening prayer, which proclaims the oneness of God. The call to love an undivided heart does not mean emotions, but to the disposition of the heart.
The first reading prepares us to listen to the Gospel reading from Mark 12:28-34. In this Gospel passage Jesus summarizes the entire Old Covenant in two commandments. The greatest is “Shema” (Deuteronomy 6:4-5 which is considered as a summary or creed of the Jewish faith). Jesus goes further to answer the question and says that the second commandment, the love of neighbor (Leviticus 19:18). These two commandments cover 613 precepts of the law and especially the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:2-17).
All Saints Day and All Souls Day: In the month of November the Church invites us to pray for our loved ones. We celebrate November 1st as All Saints day and November 2nd is All Souls day. Sometimes we think that the church means we who are on earth. The Church has three realms. The church on earth is called militant church because we are in a battle between good and evil; the souls in purgatory are called suffering church because they are in a purifying state to fully experience God’s glory and the saints who have already entered in the heavenly glory are victorious or triumphant church.
All Saints day is a feast honoring all Christian saints – known and unknown. This year All Saints Day is not Holy Day of Obligation. We will have Mass on November 1st at 8:30 am at St. Anthony. On All Souls day we remember all those who have gone before us. The souls in purgatory, they need our prayer to help their purification and to attain heavenly glory. On November 2nd we will celebrate a special Mass at St. Cecelia Cemetery 11:00 am for all souls and evening at 5 pm at St. Anthony. We celebrate a Mass of remembrance on November 14th in respective parishes in our cluster.
We ask saints to intercede for us. We pray for our loved ones who have gone before us. Every Mass there is a place we pray for our loved ones. Please remember your loved one every Mass. Another way to pray, the Church invites us to offer Mass in their name. It costs only $ 10.00, but it takes conscious thought and action to do it. Please join for All Saints Day and All Souls Day celebrations.