All Souls – Br. Luke Ditewig

Br. Luke Ditewig

Isaiah 25:6-9, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, John 5:24-27

Today we celebrate All Souls. This feast was added in the tenth century to remember all the dead, not simply those deemed notable saints down the centuries, and to particularly remember deceased family and friends.

We remember the dead with thanksgiving: for how they touched us, for who they were and are to and for us, for relationship, influence, nurture, and the gift of their life. These “whom we love but see no longer.”[i]

We remember the dead with confidence. As in the Letter to the Thessalonians: We do “not grieve as others do who have no hope.    For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have died.” And from Isaiah, God will “swallow up death forever. … and wipe away tears from all faces.”

We remember the dead with expectation. Today’s gospel says: “the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.” We each die broken and incomplete. We need and receive more beyond the grave. The dead will live, not simply awake but continue to grow and heal. Read More

In Blessed Hope – Br. Luke Ditewig

Br. Luke DitewigAll Souls Day

Isaiah 25:6-9, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, John 5:24-27

Today is the third of a trio: Halloween, All Saints and All Souls. We transferred two of them, celebrating All Saints on Sunday and now All Souls today. These three ground us in mortality and in blessed hope as we remember the dead.

All Saints Day began in the sixth century to remember the life and witness of hundreds of Christians who were killed for their faith during the first three centuries of the Church. Halloween—Hallow’s Eve—is the evening before All Hallows Day, meaning “holy” or “saint” which we now call All Saints Day. Read More

Eucharist of the Resurrection – Br. Curtis Almquist

In thanksgiving for the life and witness of Paul Wessinger, SSJE (1915-2009)

Isaiah 25:6-9
Revelation 21:2-7
John 6:37-40

The father founder of the Society of Saint John the Evangelist, Richard Meux Benson, spoke of God’s glory being manifest in our own lives through brokenness, which is a real paradox.i Our own brokenness – be it our lack of self-sufficiency, our sense of inadequacy or incompleteness, our own character flaws, even our despair – whatever our brokenness becomes the portal in our own soul where God breaks through to us.  Father Benson writes that “if we enter into ourselves we shall find the ground of our heart as it were broken up, and a deep well springing up from beneath it….  This well springs up within us in no bubbling spasmodic manner; it is continual, imperceptible, the mighty power of God rising up through our littleness – expanding our nature – gradually overflowing it – until our nature is lost to sight.”ii Or, at least, lost to our own sight.

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