Ordinary Saints

November 2, 2020 | N W | Discipleship, Father Salvador, Love, Mission, Saints, Service

Solemnity of All Saints
November 1, 2020 – Year A
Readings: Rv 7:2-4, 9-14 / Ps 24 / 1 Jn 3:1-3 / Mt 5:1-12A
by Rev. Salvador Añonuevo, Pastor

Yesterday, during the Mass for the beatification of Blessed Michael McGivney, a five-year-old boy carried McGivney’s first class relic to the altar to present it to Cardinal Tobin, who represented Pope Francis as celebrant of the Mass.

According to medical science, that boy, Michael McGivney Schachle, is not even supposed to be alive. As related to us by Brother Knight Matt Cundiff, at the beginning of this Mass, this boy’s healing from fetal hydrops, through the intercession of Blessed Michael McGivney, has been studied for years by the medical and theological experts of the Vatican and was declared miraculous. Because of this, Father Michael was raised to the order of Blessed. Blessed Michael’s beatification is an honor, not only for all the Christian Catholics here in the United States, but all over the world.

Today, we are also celebrating the feast of All Saints. Saint Alphonsus Liguori once said that each and every one of us is called to be a saint, according to our state in life. With this in mind, we could say that being a saint is as simple as being a good and holy grandfather, grandmother, father, mother, sister, brother, husband, wife, or whatever vocation or profession we may have in life.

Blessed McGivney didn’t do things that were out of the ordinary; he just lived his life as a man and priest for others. He organized the Knights of Columbus so that these men would be able to care for one another, not just as friends, but as brothers. Archbishop Lori, the Supreme Chaplain of the Knights, said that sometimes Blessed McGivney is dubbed as a saint of the ordinary. That is God’s call for each and every one of us: to continue living our ordinary lives while at the same time putting into practice the teachings of the Lord God in the sacred scriptures.

About three weeks ago, I was called to give the Last Rites to a good and holy Catholic man. As I was about to enter his bedroom, the nurse, on her way out, told me, “Father, he is COVID positive.” That was a sad moment in my priestly ministry, because it meant I would not be able to hold his hand or touch his head as I administered the last sacraments.

But I was touched by the love of his wife. Although she is also advanced in years just like her husband and could die from the virus, she didn’t leave her husband’s side. She was there for him, holding his hand, stroking his head, until he gave his last breath, just about an hour after I gave him the Last Rites. I’d say that’s what a candidate for sainthood would do.

All of us have the opportunity to do likewise, in one way or another, in one form or another. The Lord God calls each one of us to follow Him wherever we are, whatever we do. The life we live will be our ticket to God’s kingdom here on earth and in heaven.