Pastor's Blog
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October 26, 2016, 5:16 PM

What's Up With All Saints Day?

I so appreciate the people I work with! Our staff team at Christ Church is amazing - they support each other and they challenge me as the leader. We were talking this past Tuesday following our weekly prayer time about how many of the folks who worship with us are unfamiliar with some things we do in worship and in church in general. As we kicked around what to do about this reality, Patty (our Director of Children’s Ministry) said, “What about your blog? Could you use that to help us understand some of these things?” I think that’s a great idea - and so did everyone else. I have not been very diligent as of late in writing a blog entry - this challenge will help me be more faithful to the task.

So where to begin? Well, it just so happens this coming Sunday - October 30th - will be “All Saints Day” at Christ Church. Many may wonder what this day is all about and why we observe it - thanks so much for asking! The origins of All Saints Day can be traced back to the practice of the early church commemorating those who were martyred for their faith in Christ. It was customary for each martyr to have their own day of commemoration, but during the persecution of Diocletian the number of martyrs became so great a separate day could not be assigned to each one. But the church, feeling that each martyr should be remembered, assigned a common day to remember them all. The current practice of November 1 as that day reaches back to decrees issued by emperors and pope’s as early as the mid 700’s AD. Many Christian communities such as the Roman Catholic, Anglican and Lutheran Churches observe All Saints Day on November 1st, or on the Sunday between October 30 and November 5th, remembering all who have been named “saints” throughout the church’s history and as a general commemoration of the dead. Protestant churches - such as the United Methodist Church - typically observe All Saints Day the first Sunday in November as a time of remembering all Christians who have died, especially those who have passed away from the local congregation during the past year. Because our annual Church Conference (the topic for the next blog entry) falls on the first Sunday of November this year, we are choosing to observe All Saints Day the final Sunday in October - this coming Sunday. We’ll be giving thanks for 15 persons who have entered the Church Triumphant this past year, and remembering all of those who are physically gone, but whose fingerprints remain on our lives.

Why do we take time to do this? Simply put, because for better or worse, we are all the  product of someone else - physically, emotionally and spiritually. I’m reminded of Paul’s words to his apprentice Timothy: “I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.” (2 Timothy 1:5) All Saints Day provides us the opportunity to give thanks for the people who first “housed” the faith that now lives in us - whether they reside in the Church Triumphant or still in the Church of our time. And it’s a time to recommit ourselves to “passing on” the faith that lives in us to someone else. Remember, your faith came from someone...the pathway to faith for someone else most certainly runs through your life as well.

Whether or not you call Christ Church “home,” I invite you to worship with us this Sunday, October 30th, at 8:15, 9:35, or 11am as we celebrate “All Saints Day” - gratefully remembering those who have passed faith on to us, and resolutely recommitting ourselves to passing on the faith that lives in us. As always…

Keep Lookin’ Up

Pastor David



Comments

10-27-2016 at 3:57 PM
Scott Walters
Bob Finch put his Christian mark on my life. Well done good and faithful servant!
10-27-2016 at 3:34 PM
Marie Cozad
In our series "Follow" by Andy Stanley we are reminded that as God's chosen people we are clothed in compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. By remembering those who have passed on we can reflect on their many good characteristics such as those above.
10-26-2016 at 5:01 PM
Pat Mann
Because of who I am and where I am in my walk with Christ, I "Thank God" for those He has put in the journey with me.
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