Homily by Fr. Andriy Mykytyuk on All Saints’ Sunday
June 11, 2023
All Saints’ Sunday is a celebration for each one of us because we are all called to holiness and have the opportunity to become saints. As God chose people in the Old Testament: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, He Hmade a covenant with them; He chose a whole nation and made a covenant with them, in order to prepare the world for the coming of His Son through them. Now He chooses each of us — so that we become a witness of his love in this world.
God calls us to be holy.
That is why on the Sunday after Pentecost we remember the memory of All Saints. All the people we know and don’t know, whose names are in the Church Calendar, and those who are not; but who showed something very valuable with their lives. They showed how is good life with God and in God. They showed how valuable what God offers us is. Sometimes even through their own death. We have countless martyrs who suffered for Christ. Who gave their lives for values, for love, for what God offers us and calls us to, for faith…
And now the question is for us, Christians living in the 21st century. What steps do we take in order to become saints? Do we want to be other or do we want to be like this world?
We often hear that this world is the way it is, that it is changing and we live in it, and there is nothing we can do about it. But this is not true. We can do something. We can change this world when we change ourselves, when we become others. God calls us to be different! He calls us to be holy — because He is Holy! He calls us to witness Him and about Him to other people. Testify about Him with our life, our actions, our words. And sometimes it is difficult, but we have to learn how to do.
Christ in today’s Gospel tells us about confession of faith, about how we acknowledge Him in this world, how we acknowledge Him before other people. Because we Christians cannot be Christians only for ourselves. Our faith is not a private matter. Our faith is life. Faith is not only customs, not only traditions, but above all, faith is a living relationship with God. And if I do not show this to others, then “faith without works is dead.”
Therefore, I wish all of us that on this Sunday of All Saints we become one step closer to our holiness. So that we can see what prevents us from being different in this world. What can
we change in order to be closer to God and boldly witness Him in our lives.
Sometimes, it can be just the sign of the cross that we make when passing by the temple, which we make in a cafe or restaurant before eating. Sometimes it means standing on the side of truth and protecting value and justice and truth. Sometimes it means not leaving God even through suffering and death.Therefore, I wish that we walk the path of holiness to the Kingdom of Heaven. Because God calls each of us.