We’ve just celebrated All Saints Day. Maybe we went to a church service where saints were remembered, where our own “faithful departed” were included on a list of remembrance. For some of us, there are quite a few names to add to that list: grandparents, parents, siblings, friends, children. It’s easy to look back at the saints who have graced our lives.
But Christians believe in the communion of saints, and that communion includes people who have died but also people who are alive and with us right now. I propose that we celebrate the saints we eat breakfast with, or the saints we work with, or the saints who live next door.
I am graced by numerous saints: my fellow employees at Loyola Press, who make my work life a privilege and a joy; my longsuffering husband who has stuck by me nearly twenty years; my neighbors, who know my name, say hello, and who called the police when they noticed my front door standing open early one morning; the people I ride the train with, day after day, who can be irritating sometimes but who also show tremendous charity and good humor on many days.
I am graced by long-distance friends who understand when I can’t stay in touch better than I do. I am graced by two dogs and two cats, who want nothing more than to be fed, watered, and petted—and, in return offer me snuggles and enthusiasm unconditionally. I am graced by teachers on every side—from esteemed yet gracious professors at the seminary to the adolescent in my home who is, every day, finding her way in the world.
Enough about me. Who are the saints in your life? Have you celebrated them lately?