As we celebrate the Feasts of All Saints and All Souls this weekend, I recall a poet once reflecting on the death of a friend. He had taken his friend to the train station. They didn’t know it then, but this would be the last time they would see one another. Upon hearing of his friend’s death, the poet recalled his friend waving and leaning over the back rail as the train was leaving the station. His friend shouted something like, “When we’re dead we shall have the sensation of having enjoyed life altogether, whatever has happened to us.” As the distance between them widened, the poet saw his friend leaning “out into the space so that his voice should reach him.”
The voices and souls of those who have left the station on the train to glory lean across the miles this weekend to reach us and remind us that they are okay. Our prayers connect us with them, bending an ear, lending a hand, and trusting they are now enjoying the eternal banquet of love.
This is what we celebrate during this month of November. We remember the dead who continue to brush our lives with their love. We remember the dead to keep their spirit alive. We remember the dead because we believe in life. We remember all the souls that still survive in minds and memories. Souls that taught, nurtured, challenged, and comforted. Our souls are linked and this connection cuts through death’s facade and fosters life.
As we gather this Sunday afternoon at 4:00 PM at Precious Blood Center to remember those who have died, may we unite in prayer across the miles to strengthen this sacred web of memory and hope.
Joe Nassal, C.PP.S.