|“All Saints” by Wassily Kandinsky
The Feast of All Saints is one of my favorites. Each year I welcome the reminder that there are those who already know the way Home and who surround us, who accompany us, as we make our way.
These last days we have had several conversations in community about Saints, about Spirits, about the presence of those who have gone before. It is not surprising that we have spoken about this among ourselves more this year than I remember doing in the past—two of our sisters in this city have died within the last several months and their deaths have been keenly felt by the community.
It is interesting to me that when I think about what makes a Saint…or the image I have of Saints…the first thing I think of is a person’s humanity. Somehow, living the fullness of their humanity IS the divinity that radiates.
The saints I know have dirt beneath their fingernails and sometimes raggy hems on their pants. They’ve touched down and pounded upon this earth…sometimes dancing, sometimes mosey-ing, sometimes thumping, tripping, falling, sometimes simply walking as they are called to walk—with a limp, a hitch, a strident stomp, a list to one side, a swimmingly graceful light step…with each step, however taken, moving them onward in this adventure.
They have lived and shown to others the edges and quirks of their full humanity—The pointy bits and the softer ones. They have lived as Who They Are because anything less would be too confining, too “other” a shape.
They are those people who by their own freedom invite others to live that way too…in fullness. Including mistakes, fragility, upset…including the fullness of knowing that when this strength and vulnerability, this passionate and cantankerous humanity comes together through different lives and sets of experiences, Things Happen.
Things that are challenging, sometimes. Things that are hard, messy, needing forgiveness, pardon, reconciliation…
And, things that Change Lives. Things that not only speak of God, they Unabashedly Proclaim God. These saints are people who make Love manifest in all of its fullness and nuance and who invite others to do likewise.
They are people who sometimes frustrate, sometimes challenge, sometimes console, sometimes confuse, and people who radiate a love of God that cannot be held in check, cannot be suppressed, denied, or left aside if they are to Be.
I have known some of these people over my life and I am grateful.