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Feast of All Saints

This feast originated in the fourth century as the Eastern Feast of all Martyrs. In 835, Pope Gregory IV established the commemoration for all Roman Churches. The feast was transferred to November 1st in the ninth century where it countered the Celtic pagan feast of the Druids in Ireland.

Benedict speaks about All Saints

Why has the Church appointed this feast?

1. To honour God in His saints, in whose lives He has shown Himself, and to thank Him, as the author of all sanctity, for the benefits He has bestowed upon them.

2. To remind us of the communion of saints, whether they belong to the Church militant on earth, to the Church suffering in purgatory or, especially on this feast, to the Church triumphant in heaven.

3. To encourage us to strive for the same sanctity,

4. To honour those saints to whom no particular day in the year is dedicated.

5. That, through their intercession, God may give us a share in their merits, and may grant us the grace of one day sharing in their joy in heaven.

The call to sanctity

Anima Christi (by Cardinal Newman)

Soul of Christ be my sanctification,
Body of Christ be my salvation,
Blood of Christ fill all my veins,
Water from Christ's side wash out all my stains.
Passion of Christ my comfort be.
O good Jesus listen to me.
In your wounds I fain would hide,
Never to be parted from your side.
Guard me should the foe assail me,
Call me when my life shall fail me.
Bid me come to thee above
With thy saints to sing thy love.
Forever and ever. Amen

Masses for All Saints     2021    Rathkenny

Monday November 1st   10am,  7.30pm

Litany of All Saints


VATICAN CITY, 1 NOV 2008 (VIS) - In remarks he made to pilgrims before praying the Angelus on today's Solemnity of All Saints, Benedict XVI invited them to consider "the panorama of saintliness. The world", he said, "appears to us as a 'garden', where the Spirit of God, with marvellous ingenuity, created a multitude of male and female saints, from every age and social condition, of every language, people and culture.

"Each is different from the others in the uniqueness of his or her own human personality and spiritual charism. All, however, are marked by the 'seal' of Jesus, the imprint of His love".

The Pope explained how the Solemnity of All Saints "came into being during the course of the first Christian millennium as a collective celebration of the martyrs. ... We can, in fact, interpret such martyrdom in a broader sense, that of unreserved love for Christ, a love expressed in the total gift of self to God and to one's brothers and sisters. This spiritual goal, to which all the baptised are called, is achieved by following the path of the evangelical beatitudes. ... This is the same path traced by Jesus and that the saints strove to follow, always aware of their human limits. In their earthly existence, in fact, they were poor in spirit, pained by their sins, mild, starved of and thirsting for justice, merciful, pure of heart, peacemakers, persecuted for righteousness' sake. And God himself gave them a share in His own happiness. ... Now they are consoled. ... They see the God Whose children they are. In a word: 'theirs is the Kingdom of heaven'.

"On this day", the Holy Father concluded, "We feel our hearts aflame with the desire for everlasting union with the family of saints, of which we already have the grace to be a part. ... May this beautiful aspiration burn in all Christians and help them to overcome all difficulties, fears and tribulations"