All Souls Day
November 02, 2023
Fr. John Colacino C.PP.S.





Listen kindly to our prayers, O Lord,
and, as our faith in your Son,
raised from the dead, is deepened,
so may our hope of resurrection for your departed servants
also find new strength.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever. Amen.

FIRST READING  Wisdom 3:1-9

The souls of the just are in the hand of God,
and no torment shall touch them.
They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead;
and their passing away was thought an affliction
and their going forth from us, utter destruction.
But they are in peace.
For if before men, indeed, they be punished,
yet is their hope full of immortality;
chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed,
because God tried them
and found them worthy of himself.
As gold in the furnace, he proved them,
and as sacrificial offerings he took them to himself.
In the time of their visitation they shall shine,
and shall dart about as sparks through stubble;
they shall judge nations and rule over peoples,
and the LORD shall be their King forever.
Those who trust in him shall understand truth,
and the faithful shall abide with him in love:
because grace and mercy are with his holy ones,
and his care is with his elect.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM   Ps 23:1-3a, 3b-4, 5, 6

R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul.

He guides me in right paths
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
with your rod and your staff
that give me courage.

You spread the table before me
in the sight of my foes;
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.

Only goodness and kindness follow me
all the days of my life;
and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
for years to come.

SECOND READING  Romans 6:3-9

Brothers and sisters:
Are you unaware that we who were baptized into Christ Jesus
were baptized into his death?
We were indeed buried with him through baptism into death,
so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead
by the glory of the Father,
we too might live in newness of life.

For if we have grown into union with him through a death like his,
we shall also be united with him in the resurrection.
We know that our old self was crucified with him,
so that our sinful body might be done away with,
that we might no longer be in slavery to sin.
For a dead person has been absolved from sin.
If, then, we have died with Christ,
we believe that we shall also live with him.
We know that Christ, raised from the dead, dies no more;
death no longer has power over him.


GOSPEL  John 6:37-40

Jesus said to the crowds:
“Everything that the Father gives me will come to me,
and I will not reject anyone who comes to me,
because I came down from heaven not to do my own will
but the will of the one who sent me.
And this is the will of the one who sent me,
that I should not lose anything of what he gave me,
but that I should raise it on the last day.
For this is the will of my Father,
that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him
may have eternal life,
and I shall raise him on the last day.”


When once you have departed this life, there is no longer any place for repentance, no way of making satisfaction.  Here life is either lost or kept.  Here, by the worship of God and by the fruit of faith, provision is made for eternal salvation.  Let no one be kept back, either by his sins, or by his years, from coming to obtain salvation.  To him who still remains in this world  there is no repentance that is too late. (St. Cyprian of Carthage)

Death is then no cause for mourning, for it is the cause of mankind’s salvation. Death is not something to be avoided, for the Son of God did not think it beneath His dignity, nor did He seek to escape it. (St. Ambrose of Milan)

Keep a clear eye toward life’s end. Do not forget your purpose and destiny as God’s creature. What you are in His sight, is what you are and nothing more. Remember that when you leave this earth, you can take nothing that you have received…but only what you have given – a full heart enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice and courage. (St. Francis of Assisi)

There is no complete joy save in paradise. There is no joy to be compared to that of a soul in purification except that of those in paradise. As the rust of sin is consumed one becomes more and more open to God’s love. Just as a covered object left out in the sun can’t for all that be penetrated deeply by the sun’s light so isn’t it just that surface defects, our sins, need to be removed. Having opened oneself to being made wholly one with God’s will, one lets go of all sin. Only then can one open oneself fully to God. To the extent that God gives this gift one “sees into” God.  Joy in God, oneness with God, is the end of every human person. Seeking this is an instinct implanted in us at our creation. We want to respond fully to the love of God and what we say about God and what it is like to open oneself fully is nothing in comparison with reality. When God finds one pure, as one was first created, then God tugs at us with a kind of glance. This draws and binds one to God with a love that is like pure fire.In that love, God so transforms us that we know nothing but God. And God doesn’t stop until we are brought to our perfection! .... It is the pure and intense love of God that does this. The overwhelming love of God gives one joy beyond words. (St. Catherine of Genoa)

I look at You, my Lord Jesus
and think of Your most holy Body
and I keep it before me,
as a pledge of my own resurrection.
Though I die, as die I certainly shall,
nevertheless, I shall not forever die,
for I shall rise again.
O You, who are the Truth,
I know and believe with my whole heart,
that this very flesh of mine will rise again.
I know, base and odious as it is at present,
that it will one day, if I be worthy,
be raised incorruptible
and altogether beautiful and glorious.
This I know,
this by Your grace,
I will ever keep before me.
Amen. (St. John Henry Newman)

Have dead men long to wait?—

There is a certain term
For their bodies to the worm
And their souls at Heaven gate.
Dust to dust, clod to clod,
These precious things of God,
Trampled underfoot by man
And beast the appointed years.—

Their longest life was but a span
For change and smiles and tears.
Is it worth while to live,
Rejoice and grieve,
Hope, fear, and die?
Man with man, truth with lie,
The slow show dwindles by:
At last what shall we have
Besides a grave?—

Lies and shows no more,
No fear, no pain,
But after hope and sleep
Dear joys again.
Those who sowed shall reap:
Those who bore
The Cross shall wear the Crown:
Those who clomb the steep
There shall sit down.
The Shepherd of the sheep
Feeds His flock there,
In watered pastures fair
They rest and leap.
“Is it worth while to live?”
Be of good cheer:
Love casts out fear:
Rise up, achieve. (Christina Rossetti)

How are we to celebrate a feast of all the holy dead?  Is this possible simply because God is the God of the living and not of the dead, because his word and even the wisdom of this world tells us that these dead still live?  Because we loved the dead and still love them, we must be with them always.  But are they also with us?  Do they belong to this love and to the celebration of this love?    They have departed, they are silent.  No word from them reaches our ears; the gentle kindness of their love no longer fills our heart.  How quiet the dead are, how dead they are!  Do they want us to forget them, as we forget a casual acquaintance on a trip, with whom we exchanged a few insignificant words?  If life is not taken away form those who depart this life in God’s love, but is changed into eternal, measureless, superabundant life, why then should it seem to us that they no longer exist?  Is the inaccessible light of God into which they have entered so faint that it cannot penetrate to us down here?  Does even their love (and not only their bodies) have to abandon us in order to live with God in his light?  Does their silence imitate the silence of their God, to whose home they have gone?.... But if we keep silent and meek, if we listen to this silence of God’s, then we begin to grasp with a comprehension that exceeds our own power to evoke or even to understand why both God and the dead are so silent.  Then it dawns on us that they are near us precisely in our feast of the holy souls.  God’s silence is the boundless sphere where alone our love can produce its act of faith in his love....For if his presence in our midst were obvious, in our search for him we would find only ourselves.  We must, however, go out from ourselves, if we are to find him where he is really himself.  Because his love is infinite, it can dwell openly and radiantly only in his own infinity; and because he wants to show us his infinite love, he has hidden it from us in our finiteness, whence he calls out to us.  Our faith in him is nothing but the dark road in the night between the deserted house of our life with its puny, dimly lit rooms, and the blinding light of his eternal life.  His silence in this world is nothing but the Earthly appearance of the eternal word of his love.... And it is precisely in this way that the silence of our dead also calls out to us.  They live in his life, and that is why they speak his words to us.  They speak the word of the God of the true life, the word that is far removed from our dying.  The dead are silence because they live, just as our noisy chatter is supposed to make us forget that we are dying.  Their silence is the word of their love for us, the real message that they have for us.  By this word they are really near to us, provided only that we listen to this soundless word and understand it, and do not drown it out through the noise of everyday life. It is in this way that they are close to us whose feast we celebrate today in the silent composure of the heart.  They are near us together with the silent God, the God of the silent dead, the living god of the living.  He calls out to us through his silence, and they, by their silence, summon us into God’s life.....Be mindful of the dead, O heart.  They live.  Your own life, the life still hidden even to you, they live unveiled in eternal light.  Our living who are with the God of live cannot forget us dead.  God has granted our living everything, for he has given them himself.  But he goes further and also grants them this favor: that their silence will become the most eloquent word of their love for us, the word that will accompany our love home to them, into their life and their light. (Karl Rahner)


For our holy Father Pope Francis, for our Bishop, and all the clergy, that they may lead their flock to the pastures of eternal life.

For the Christian people, that God may confirm them in oneness and faith.

For the entire world, that it may be delivered from the scourge of war.

For those who are unemployed, hungry, or homeless, that God may show them a father’s care,

For our deceased relatives, friends, and benefactors, that they may have the reward of their goodness.

For our brothers and sisters who are saddened and troubled, that they may receive God’s comfort and aid.

God, our shelter and our strength,
you listen in love to the cry of your people:
hear the prayers we offer for our departed brothers and sisters.
Cleanse them from their sins
and grant them the fullness of redemption.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.  Amen. (ICEL; 1998)


Bring us, O Lord God, at our last awakening into the house and gate of heav’n to enter into that gate and dwell in that house, where there shall be no darkness nor dazzling, but one equal light; no noise nor silence, but one equal music; no fears nor hopes, but one equal possession; no ends nor beginnings, but one equal eternity; in the habitation of thy glory and dominion, world without end. Amen. (John Donne)

Communion Antiphon

Closing Hymn

My Soul, there is a country
Afar beyond the stars,
Where stands a winged sentry
All skillful in the wars;
There, above noise and danger
Sweet Peace sits, crown’d with smiles,
And One born in a manger
Commands the beauteous files.
He is thy gracious friend
And (O my Soul awake!)
Did in pure love descend,
To die here for thy sake.
If thou canst get but thither,
There grows the flow’r of peace,
The rose that cannot wither,
Thy fortress, and thy ease.
Leave then thy foolish ranges,
For none can thee secure,
But One, who never changes,
Thy God, thy life, thy cure. (Vaughan Williams)