November 3, 2019
The Feast of All Saints
In holy baptism God makes saints out of sinners. In holy communion God forgives the sins of all the saints. On the festival of All Saints we remember with thanksgiving those who have been baptized into the faith. And we remember with thanksgiving those who have died in the faith. They are the sign of our hope and an image of the glory we shall inherit. Today we sing praises to our God, who brings life out of death.
Painting by Elizabeth Wang
PRAYER OF THE DAY
Almighty God, You have knit Your people together in one communion in the Body of Your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Grant us grace to follow Your blessed saints in lives of faith and commitment, and to know the inexpressible joys you have prepared for those who love You, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Daniel 7:1-3, 15-18
Festivals and Commemorations this week
The faithful are remembered on the day of their death, the day they are born anew in heaven. The "c" indicates an approximate date.
November 1 All Saints Day
The custom of commemorating all of the saints of the church on a single day goes back at least to the third century. Our All Saints Day celebrates the baptized people of God, living and dead, who make up the body of Christ. Today, or on this upcoming All Saints Sunday, many congregations will remember the faithful who have died during the past year.
Our liturgy abounds with references to the saints and to our continual relationship with them. The preface for All Saints describes the relationship this way: “that moved by their witness and supported by their fellowship, we may run with perseverance the race that is set before us and with them receive the unfading crown of glory.” Today and this week invite people to reflect on others–living and dead–who have moved and supported us in our lives of faith.
November 3 Martín de Porres, renewer of society, 1639
Martín was the son of a Spanish knight and Ana Velázquez, a freed black slave from Panama. Martín apprenticed himself to a barber-surgeon in Lima, Peru, and was known for his work as a healer. Martín was a lay brother in the Order of Preachers (Dominicans) and engaged in many charitable works. He was a gardener as well as a counselor to those who sought him out. He was noted for his care of all the poor, regardless of race. His own religious community described him as the “father of charity.” His work included the founding of an orphanage, a hospital, and a clinic for dogs and cats. He is recognized as an advocate for Christian charity and interracial justice.
November 7 John Christian Frederick Heyer, missionary to India, 1873
Heyer was the first missionary sent out by American Lutherans. He was born in Germany and came to the United States after his confirmation. He was ordained in 1820, established Sunday schools, and taught at Gettysburg College and Seminary. Heyer became a missionary in the Andhra region of India. During a break in his mission work he received the M.D. degree from what would later be Johns Hopkins University. He later served as chaplain of the Lutheran seminary at Philadelphia until his death.