Revelation 7:9-17, I John 3:1-3 and Matthew 5:1-12
All Hallowed Eve, Reformation Day, All Saints Day, The Day of the Dead, they all are recognized October 31-November 2. We would be hard pressed to find a stretch of days which celebrates life and death and eternal life so vividly. Holy Week with Good Friday and Easter are the ultimate expressions of our faith, but these Fall days are perhaps the most vivid in celebrations, dress, and an element of festivity!
Martin Luther nailed 95 Theses to a church door and Protestantism and ceaseless church reform was being born on October 31, 1517. Halloween developed alongside Christian emphasis on celebrating the saints in heaven. All Saints Day says the Church is finally triumphant in spite of death. And the traditional, Mexican Day of the Dead arrives on November 2. A colorful, indigenous way of acknowledging death and local customs that accompany remembrance of those gone before us.
For most of us in worship it will be a time of remembrance of those in our church family as well as loved ones and friends from previous times and other churches. We trust them all to be in the eternal embrace of a loving and forgiving God. A time for us, still the Church at Work, to be both sad with grief yet joyful in hope! The playfulness of Halloween helps all ages “indirectly” address mortality and our fears while moving on to Sunday’s celebration of those Saints who are one step beyond us in the fullness of the Kingdom of God!
So, with these 3 days so closely connected with faithfulness, come to worship on Sunday expecting to experience the “hope that is within us” and to stay “in communion” with our loved ones both here and forever.
See you on Sunday! Amen!