Squeals. Dash. “Slow down.” Giggles. Repeat.
My family home becomes an instant obstacle course with children darting in and out of rooms, around and under tables. The adults mostly love the whirling sounds of joy and excitement as we talk over food and drinks. Well, sometimes it can be hard to distinguish talking from yelling when the level of frenzy climbs to the point at which one of the moms or dads needs to go quiet the herd.
This image of my nieces and nephews scurrying around my parents’ house comes to mind as the Church remembers the Holy Souls today. The First Reading is rich with images and descriptions of the difference between the way we tend to think of death and what Heaven knows. This passage from the Book of Wisdom is probably among the most gorgeous of the Church calendar. It is exceptionally breathtaking in light of our faith in eternal life. (See Wisdom 3:1-9.)
The writer says that in the eyes of those who do not have faith, the death of someone is “an affliction and their going forth from us, utter destruction” (Wisdom 3:2-3). But we who have the gift of faith can think of our beloved faithful departed as having completed the test of this life and pray for and with them today trusting in Our God Who is Love and Mercy. Perhaps you have lost a loved one and your grief is very present to you. This day is also full of graces for you because your loved one is receiving much grace today as the Church prays for departed souls.
I often wonder what Heaven will be like. What will we do? How will our hearts and minds experience the unspeakable joy of union with God? The First Reading says the souls of the just “shall dart about as sparks through stubble” (Wisdom 3:7). This reminds me of how Lord says we must become childlike to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. We need to allow the Lord to teach and nurture our hearts.
May we become so trusting of Love that we receive the freedom to move about under the gaze of our Good Father with joy in our hearts. Will we be darting about in Heaven? It is our true home, after all.
We who have the gift of faith can think of our beloved faithful departed as having completed the test of this life and pray for and with them today trusting in Our God Who is Love and Mercy. // @srmariakimClick to tweet
Sisters, let’s join in praying for the Holy Souls and for those of us who are mourning the passing of a loved one today. See this list of prayers for the dead.
Sister Maria Kim Bui is a Daughter of Saint Paul, women religious dedicated to evangelization in and through the media. She is originally from Tempe, AZ, spent most of her fourteen years in religious life in the northeast, some time in Texas, and now was recently asked to serve as the director of marketing and sales at the Sisters' publishing house in Boston. She is a contributing author to our children's devotional prayer book, Rise Up and the author of our Blessed Conversations Mystery: Belong found here. Find out more about her here.