Fall is in full swing now that it is the first weekend of October! With fall comes the usual cool weather, school days and homework, changing colors of leaves, apple cider and doughnuts from the cider mill along with early sunsets and late sunrises. These are all wonderful gifts from God that we get to enjoy to the fullest here in Michigan!
Things happen here at church in the fall too: Sunday School is in full swing, the church might have a bit of a chill in the air, the heat gets turned on, the Annual Homecoming Mass is celebrated, this year we will also celebrate Sr. Jolene’s retirement and often there is a blood drive. We also look toward November for All Souls Day.
All Souls Day is the day we remember those we love who have passed from this life to eternal life…it isn’t something we necessarily look forward to, yet at the same time, we are grateful for the remembrance that occurs on this day. This year we will celebrate All Souls Day to Masses on the last weekend of October, the 29th and 30th.
Every year the Special Liturgy Committee tries to plan the Mass so it is special to those members of the parish who have lost someone especially close to them during this past year (November 1st of 2015 – October 25th of this year). For these family members who have passed to eternal life we write their names on a scroll that is displayed throughout November until the 1st weekend of Advent. The names that go on the scroll are parishioners who have passed and a parishioner’s immediate family member who was not a parishioner (spouse, parent, sibling, child) who has passed during this time frame.
Other individuals who have passed away prior to Last November 1st or individuals who passed away during this year who are ‘extended’ family members (cousins, in-laws, aunts, uncles) will be remembered in another way: names written on individual pieces of paper and placed in baskets at the foot of the scroll mentioned above. Paper will be available on the weekends of October 15/16 and 22/23; please take the time to write these family/friends names on pieces of paper during these two weekends at Mass.
The October 29th and 30th Masses will be for all of us to remember all of our loved ones who have passed into eternal life. We will have the litany sung, candles lit by scroll and flowers for families of those parishioners and immediate family members who have passed. You might want to make sure you are here that weekend so we can remember and pray with you!
It really is a special time when we remember our loved ones like this in the fall. So many people feel lonely, sad and withdrawn because of the short days and increased hours of darkness. Together we can share memories of those we’ve lost from this world and discover that we are not alone, we can treasure what love we’ve shared with those who are gone and treasure the love we have with those who are present in our church family. If we carry that love with us perhaps we won’t be so sad, lonely and withdrawn but filled with the light of Christ as seen in the faces of those in our midst.
Peace & love,