All Saints Day is when the universal church—past, present, and future—gathers to rejoice in the one body of Christ. Think of all the people that entails! John describes this in Revelation as “a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne” (Rev. 7:9). How do we help others recognize their sainthood as well as their part in the salvation story? There are famous and not-so-famous saints, but it is important to emphasize that sainthood through baptism is the great equalizer, for as 1 John says: “See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are” (3:1).
On this day, we will name those who have been baptized, affirmed their faith through the rite of Confirmation, and, most poignantly, the names of those who have died since our last All Saints celebration.