Sunday, November 1, 2015

Interfaith Days: All Saints' Day

In many Christian denominations, today is All Saints' Day, although in Eastern Christianity, the festival is the first Sunday after Pentecost. It is the middle day of Hallowmas, the three-day festival commemorating those saints, known and unknown, who have died (in Catholic theology: those who have attained the beatific vision in Heaven). Many churches have a recitation of the names of members of that congregation who have died during the previous year. As this site indicates, the feast was mentioned in a sermon as early as 373 AD, and the date of November 1 was instituted by the 8th century Pope Gregory III, while the 9th century Pope Gregory IV made it a feast of the entire church. See also this site for the meaning of being a saint.

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