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Glorious (Non-Canonical) Saints (Wed Nov 1, 2006 8:46 am)

Today is the Feast of All Saints, so Happy Feast Day to us all. Does that sound proud, even silly? Yet, saints are what we are all called to be.

The Church created this feast day to honor all the saints in Heaven whose names are not known and thus, who have no official feast day of their own. Given the present ecclesiastical machinery for creating saints and its fondness for priests, nuns, popes, ecstatics and stigmatics, there are doubtless many unnamed but no less holy saints to honor on this day.

We all have our personal favorites as unrecognized saints. For some, it is famous heroes, whether Catholic or not, like Gandhi, Martin Luther King or the Buddha. For others, it is the Catholic martyrs to charity and social justice, like Oscar Romero, Jean Donovan or Dorothy Day. For still others, it is the great Catholic thinkers and writers, like Erasmus, Teilhard de Chardin or Bernard Haring. And for many of us, it's someone we knew a little or very well, who had no idea he or she allowed God to shine through them to us.

The point is that most of these people didn't know they were saints, didn't think in those terms at all. They just tried to live as well as they could by the graces they were given - they tried their best and allowed God to do the rest. And by the marvelous economy of salvation, when they - or we - do their and our best and let God do the rest, they belonged to God ever more completely and became saints. And so shall we.

So, Happy Feast Day.

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