Happy All Saints

Today we celebrate the saints–all of them, even those without a feast day. Some saints may be unknown to anyone but ourselves. For example, perhaps we have a beloved family member who has passed on but somehow exemplified for us God’s Love. A colleague of mine once phrased it this way: a saint is a person whose existence makes God real and alive for you.

Today I think of people like my grandfather who died more than ten years ago but whose love and care gave so much to me and others. He certainly did exemplify courage and other virtues–for example, as. Latvian escaping from a Russian POW camp in the 1940s and then walking to Germany where his wife had taken refuge. But these are not the kinds of things I think about as I reflect on him as my saint. Rather, it was the little things: when he made my brother and me tiny animals out of wax from the lab at which he worked, or what it felt like to help him out summers on the little farm like land to which he and my grandmother retired, as he hung laundry to dry, or taught me how to take the ducks on a walk to the pond and back to the barn. It’s the little, cumulative acts of love over the years that add up to something in the lives of the saints –especially on this day for the not-showy-enough-to-get-their-own-day saints. And in this way they serve as models for our own lives, too.

Happy all saints!