Before we can answer this question, we must know what it is we are aspiring to. How does the Dictionary define a Saint?
“A saint is a person who is recognized as having an exceptional degree of holiness or likeness or closeness to God.”
Based on this definition, does this seem too difficult a task for us living in this time in history?
When we think of Saints, we remember the courageous martyrs who shed their blood so willingly for love of God and faith in His Church. We witness the heroic activities of Mother Teresa and the like, who forget self and devote their lives to love of God through love of neighbour. Or, the saintly men and women whose lives are spent in many hours of prayer in Monasteries and Convents over the centuries.
Indeed, all of the above have gone ‘above and beyond’ to answer the call of the Lord and pursue the Heavenly reward promised to those who love Him.
We may feel unable to imitate their efforts or obtain their achievements but…we can be Saints.
Each one of us can be a Saint right where we are planted, by doing our daily duty to the best of our ability and doing so, for the love of God and sanctification of our Souls. In this way, we would be following the way of a Saint who is known for her ‘little way’ of living, and of loving God in that living each day. Saint Therese of Lisieux, believed that we must “Miss no single opportunity of making some small sacrifice, here by a smiling look, there by a kindly word; always doing the smallest right and doing it all for love.”
Each one of us is loved by God as though we were the only one that His eyes fell upon. Again, St Therese has a beautiful analogy to remind us that each is unique – “The splendour of the rose and the whiteness of the lily do not rob the little violet of its scent, nor the daisy of its simple charm. If every tiny flower wanted to be a rose, spring would lose its loveliness.” What a beautiful thought.
So again today, All Saints Day 2017, as has been the Church’s practice for centuries, we duly honor the men and women who have spent their lives doing that for which all mankind has been created – to know God, to love God and to be happy with Him in the world to come.
It’s for one and all. We are not alone – God wants it for us too. Let us gather a harvest of souls along with us as we strive to love God through love of neighbour. May our every thought, word and action count so that we too may be reckoned amongst those whose lives and achievements we acclaim today.