All Saints' Day, a Christian Solemnity
On November 1, Christians celebrate All Saints' Day. On this day the Church remembers all those deceased who, having passed the age of death, are still alive. purgatoryThey have been totally sanctified and enjoy eternal life in the presence of God.
This is why All Saints' Day is not only celebrated in honor of the blessed or saints who are on the list of the canonized and for whom the Church celebrates on a special day of the year; it is also celebrated on honor all those who are not canonized, but are already living in the presence of God.. These souls are already considered saints because they are under the presence of God.
History of All Saints' Day
This celebration had its origins in the IV century due to the great number of martyrs of the church. Later on May 13, 610, Pope Boniface IV dedicated the Roman Pantheon to the Christian cult. This is how they began to be celebrated on this date.
Later Pope Gregory IV, in the 7th century, moved the feast to November 1.
The saints officially "canonized" by the Catholic Church number several thousand. But there is an immense number of non-canonized saints, who are already enjoying God in heaven. To these, the non-canonized saints, this feast is especially dedicated. The church seeks to recognize the work of the "unknown saints" who risked their lives for justice and freedom anonymously.
All Saints, painted by Fra Angelico. Italian painter who knew how to combine the life of a Dominican friar with that of a painter. He was beatified by John Paul II in 1982.
Difference between All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day
The Pope Francis explained in a very clear way the difference between All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day:
"On November 1 we celebrate the Solemnity of All Saints. On November 2, the Commemoration of the Faithful Departed. These two celebrations are closely linked to each other, how joy and tears find in Jesus Christ a synthesis that is the foundation of our faith and hope. Indeed, on the one hand, the Church, a pilgrim in history, rejoices through the intercession of the saints and blessed who support her in the mission of proclaiming the Gospel; on the other hand, she, like Jesus, shares the weeping of those who suffer the separation from their loved ones, and like Him and thanks to Him, she makes her thanksgiving resound to the Father who has freed us from the dominion of sin and death".
"There are many wonderfully holy Christians, there are many wonderfully, delightfully holy mothers of families; there are many wonderful fathers of families. They will occupy in heaven places of wonder." Saint Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer
All Saints' Day
On November 1, the Catholic Church celebrates the Solemnity of All Saints. A feast instituted in honor of each and every saint, known or unknown, for their great work in spreading God's message. Many people attend a special Mass in their honor today. This day of the feast of All Saints, the Church asks us to look to heaven, which is our future homeland. We remember all those who are already in the presence of God and who are not remembered as canonized saints. And there are millions who have already reached the presence of God. Most certainly a majority of them did not arrive in a direct way, perhaps they went through purgatory, but in the end they managed to be in the presence of God.
All Souls Day
November 2 is the day of the faithful departed. Although it seems to be the same, it is far from it. First we must keep in mind that the celebration of the dead is a cultural tradition where people remember those who have died and dedicate altars where they place photos, flowers and the food that the person remembered liked so much in life. According to historians, this tradition is mainly found in Mexico 1800 years before Christ. On this day the Church invites us to pray for all those who have already died but most likely have not reached eternal joy. Maybe they are in purgatory and need our prayers, that is why it is necessary to to remember them at the Holy Mass of the Dead and pray at all times for his eternal rest.
With the collaboration of
Catechism of the Catholic Church