>Happy All Saints Day

>Halloween is a fun celebration. The kids love it of course. But we move on. Today is All Saints Day.

Painting by Fra Angelico, 15th century

Often I wish my religious background included the “religious calendar” one finds in Catholicism. Being a Protestant by birth and training, and not just a Protestant but a Baptist no less, I was frequently taught how wrong those Catholics are. Sharp lines were drawn and divisions articulated, sometimes with great emotion. Maybe those Catholics are wrong in some things, but I know too, as I have fled much of my religious roots, that those Baptists are wrong in many things as well. Now I have Catholic friends of whose faith I have no doubts. I have looked more closely at Catholic teaching and practices and I find much there that I like and wish were part of my life. My Catholic friends would say “why don’t you become Catholic then?” Not now friends. But I do think much was thrown out with the bathwater by the reformers. Some would say not enough, but I think there is a middle ground somewhere. One thing lost is a sense of history and the richness of the lives of the saints. I know that all believers are saints, but there are also those who inspire. They are like heroes. I’m not convinced that praying to the saints is Biblical, but I do think honoring them is a good thing, even if it’s merely for our own encouragement. But growing up Protestant and continuing in that tradition to some degree, I have no social context in which to do such celebrating. That is something I will continue to explore. For now I just say have a great All Saints Day and may you be encouraged.

I must say, as well, that today is my wife’s birthday. She is most definitely a saint in my book.

What is All Saints Day? Here’s the low down:

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