Keeping with the theme of Halloween and All Saint’s Day we now move to All Soul’s Day. This is the day we pay homage to those who have passed on. It is also known as the “Day of the Dead”. It is hoped that they have passed on to Heaven but also serves as a day to ask for forgiveness of the sins of the dead so that they may pass on to Heaven.
Created in 998 it is another Christian holiday. It is a remembrance of those loved ones that have passed before us though there are many who also pray for unknown people’s souls. I am sure we all know the sinners of others that we can pray for forgiveness. I think sometimes it is easier to pray for their sins than our own so hopefully, once we have passed someone will pray for us as well.
This is not restricted to Christianity, but today was created for Christians. It really is a day about remembering. So long as a person is remembered, they really haven’t totally moved on. It’s therapeutic for the living and hopefully helpful for the dead.
In an odd sort of way it is also a celebration for those who have passed because they are in a better place than they were before. A whole lot of us hope that is the case. If you believe that death is nothing but a hole in the ground, then you don’t have much to look forward too.
If you believe in God then you believe you have a soul. If you have a soul, then you hopefully will go to Heaven and All Soul’s Day makes a lot of sense!
How to celebrate – Remember those who have gone before you. Pray that those who have passed have reached Heaven. Believe!
Today we celebrate all those Saints in Christianity, most set by the Catholic Church. Many of the Saints were martyrs who died in the love for Christ and the people who follow him. There are many who pray to the Saints for their help and guidance. There is little doubt they were devoted people who were leaders just by living the lives they lived.
All Saint’s Day was originally called Hallomas and celebrated in May. It was moved to November to help combat the pagan holiday of Halloween. The leaders of the church believed that Halloween had become too popular and could not simply be ignored or destroyed by the church.
There are over 10,000 Saint’s, all appointed by the church. Most are designated to cover some human fault or some human need (which pretty much seems like the same thing). Most Christian religions believe there are Saints, though they do not expect them to intercede on their behalf.
The honest truth is, no one knows for sure. So if you believe in Saints, Angels, or Guardians then I see no reason to stop the practice. If you do not, what harm is there in letting others believe they are being served in some way by these Saints. They generally ask things those on earth have no chance of answering.
Believe in Saints or not, today is their day… not yours. If you are a believer I hope the Saints will help you with your request, if you do not believe, I hope they don’t hold it against you on judgement day.
How to celebrate – See how many Saints you can name. Find out which Saints assist with what needs. Study what it takes to become a Saint.
This day has a different kind of meaning to me. As you may have guessed, I am a writer… I do more than blogs. (Whether they are good or not I leave to you) However, I wrote a manuscript called, “Why The Evergreens Stay Green”. It involves and Angel that once lived on earth and is charged to come back and find a tree willing to have itself turned into a manger for Jesus, without knowing who Jesus actually is.
I think it is a good story with some meaning to it… sacrifice is often asked of us without knowing who or what will benefit from it. I was asked to turn it into a play for children for Christmas time at a church. The Minister came back and told me they could not do it the way it was written because people cannot be Angels.
I thought the minister was missing the point, and wrong, so I looked it up and darn if he wasn’t right. According to theology, people cannot become, or ever have been, Angels. People are supposed to be above Angels because they have to learn and accept the Lord, instead being “born” as an Angel and more or less be “forced” into service. (Not the right words but I am not sure how else to state it.)
But in my world, I feel Angels are better, and something we should all strive to be. As humans, we are flawed. Angels are not. The idea that if you live your life trying to live up to the image of an Angel will make you a better person. If this makes God be mad at me, I am sorry. We should all strive to be better than we are and since we would only have each other to use as an example of how to live our lives, without Angels, I chose to try and live mine like an apprentice Angel, striving to actually become one some day. Today was created by Jayne Howard Feldman in 1993. God bless her.
How to celebrate – Try to be better today than yesterday. Put others before yourself. Trust in God to lead your way.
Today is Trinity Sunday in Australia. So why should we care? Well it’s celebrated as well in Canada, the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom and here in the United States. It combines the Trinity, The Father, The Son and The Holy Ghost (Or Holy Spirit) into one.
This is a hard concept for many to believe but it’s sort of like the President, the Vice-President and the Secretary of State except in a union where all three work together, exist because of each other and blend themselves into one. Obviously the President, Vice-President and Secretary of State don’t do that!
The day was created by Pope Gregory IX in 828 CE. (So why isn’t it celebrated in Italy?). It’s symbol is the Borromean rings, three rings connected to one another. It is one of the few church celebrate doctrines.
If you are a Christian it is an important Sunday. The idea that three separate entities can become one is hard to understand. But God is the Father, Jesus is the Son and the Holy Spirit is the light that they bring to you. One does not exist without the other, combined they are the perfect union.
Either you believe, or you don’t. Most religions have something similar to this. To those of us that follow Christ, it is hard for us to imagine something else. However, as we ask for tolerance of what we believe, we must also give tolerance to what others believe.
How to celebrate – Learn more about Trinity Sunday. Celebrate the day in Church. Be tolerant of others.
For me, I know prayer works. It may not for you and it does not always bring me what I hope for but it does bring me what is best for me (funny how what we want is not always what is best for us). Today is sponsored by “Church Women United”.
The day was founded by Mary Ellen Fairchild James, a Methodist from Brooklyn, NY for home missions in 1887. Forty years later, in 1927, the day was established on the 1st Friday of March. After another 40 years the Second Vatican Council accepted the day allowing all Catholics to participate in the day, 1967.
We are taught that saying prayers in a group works better – that when enough voices pray for the same thing they are more often acted upon, not because they mean more than your private prayers, but because they are brought to God by more voices that care. That makes sense, but I believe your individual prayers are heard just as clearly.
When you think no one is listening to you, you are wrong. You are always heard but you have to believe. After-all, if you don’t believe in who you are praying to, then why should you believe your prayers will be answered.
How to celebrate – Say a prayer today.
Well lets start out this one with the fact that no one claims having created this day… I wonder why? In theory, you are supposed to do today what you can to help people, to make their lives better and to bring them happiness. So, how’s that working out for you?
We all know from the movies what happens when we try to play God. We aren’t very good at it. Maybe because most of the time we are thinking about ourselves and how we can benefit from something. I don’t think that is how God works though.
The idea is to help others accomplish goals that they might not be able to do by themselves, or for themselves. To reach out to them and pick them up when they fall, and we all fall. I hear a lot of celebrities that think they were able to get where they are without God’s help. That puts them on a fool’s errand. If you do not believe in God, then don’t act like you are a God.
Somehow over time many of us look at the world and forget who created it. Yes, we created the mess but we did not create the trees or the birds or the oceans. We are so busy looking at the surface that we can no longer see what the surface rests on.
So if you think you can do better than God or that there is no God, then take the day and show all the wonders you can create.
How to celebrate – Do something good for someone else today. Look around for the things that you can not explain away by science or math… those are the things God created. Imagine how you could make the world a better place (and then do it if you can).
Today is Pardon Day, the day we need to forgive and forget. September 8th was selected because it was the day that Gerald Ford pardoned Richard Nixon for his crimes (Real or imagined). His crimes seem very minor compared to what has followed, but then… they weren’t any better before him either. It seems like all we ever do is pardon those who lead us as a nation.
However, if you really look at it closely, we all have something to be forgiven of. Some, naturally, worse than others but none of us can escape blame for something. And then we all know people that have done something to us that we find hard to forgive. We should though, because hanging on to that anger and rage does no one any good.
Most of us realize that the only one who can truly forgive us is God. If you don’t believe in God then you really have no one to answer to. For some, that may be a good thing but for most of us, it keeps us in check and causes us to forgive as well. Remember, to forgive is divine.
We pardon that mess in a grocery store, we pardon our pets (hopefully) for the accidents our pets have so why do we find it so hard to pardon each other? Maybe it’s because we should know better but we don’t. Anyone can make a mistake, sometimes big mistakes, but the sooner we get over them the sooner they can get over them.
So pardon all those who have wronged you, or you believe have wronged you. It does no good to hold that grudge. It only makes you feel worse, and the person you view as an enemy.
How to celebrate – Call someone you have been mad at for a long time and begin to make amends. Think up all those you have committed some offense to and ask for their forgiveness. See if you can find any reason to agree with someone who holds a different opinion than you.