The month of November is dedicated to the Souls in Purgatory, whose feast is celebrated on November 2. The entire month of November falls during the liturgical season known as Ordinary Time, which is represented by the liturgical color green. This symbol of hope is the color of the sprouting seed and arouses in the faithful the hope of reaping the eternal harvest of heaven, especially the hope of a glorious resurrection. It is used in the offices and Masses of Ordinary Time. The last portion of the liturgical year represents the time of our pilgrimage to heaven during which we hope for reward.
The Holy Father's Intentions
Dialogue and Reconciliation in the Near East: That a spirit of dialogue, encounter, and reconciliation emerge in the Near East, where diverse religious communities share their lives together. (See also http://www.popesprayerusa.net/)
Focus of the Liturgy
Highlights of the Month
During November, as in all of Ordinary Time (Time After Pentecost), the Liturgy signifies and expresses the regenerated life from the coming of the Holy Spirit, which is to be spent on the model of Christ's Life and under the direction of His Spirit. As we come to the end of the Church year we are asked to consider the end times, our own as well as the world's. The culmination of the liturgical year is the Feast of Christ the King. "This feast asserts the supreme authority of Christ over human beings and their institutions.... Beyond it we see Advent dawning with its perspective of the Lord's coming in glory."— The Liturgy and Time, A.G. Mortimort
This month the main liturgical feasts are:
Solemnity of All Saints (November 1)
All Souls (November 2)
St. Charles Borromeo (November 4)
Lateran Basilica (November 9)
St. Martin of Tours (November 11)
St. Josaphat (November 12)
St. Frances Xavier Cabrini (November 13)
St. Albert the Great (November 15)
Sts. Margaret of Scotland and Gertrude (November 16)
Presentation of Mary (November 21)
St. Cecilia (November 22)
Sts. Clement I and St.Columban (November 23)
St. Andrew Dung-Lac and Companions (November 24)
St. Catherine of Alexandria (November 25)
The Solemnity of Christ the King (November 24) and St. Andrew (November 30).
The feasts of St. Martin de Porres (November 3), St. Leo the Great (November 10), and St. Elizabeth of Hungary (November 17), are superseded by the Sunday Liturgy.
Food for Thought
Following Jesus Through All of Life’s Circumstances
Today salvation has come to this house. (Luke 19:9)
Today’s Gospel paints a vivid picture of Zacchaeus the tax collector—wealthy, despised, and also very short—trying unsuccessfully to see through a crowd. He climbs a tree just to get a look at Jesus. It must have been an astonishing and amusing sight to see such a prominent person doing something so silly. You can just imagine the grin on Jesus’ face as he looks up and sees Zacchaeus’ irrepressible, childlike enthusiasm. Then that enthusiasm turns to joy when Jesus invites himself to Zacchaeus’ house.
Inspired by Jesus’ warm words of acceptance, Zacchaeus promises to give half of his wealth to the poor and more than repay the people he has extorted.So did Zacchaeus follow up on this bold promise? We’ll never know since he is not mentioned again.
After Jesus moved on, the hard work would have begun for Zacchaeus. If he gave away his money, he would have to learn how to live with less. He would have to fight the temptation to return to his dishonest methods of collecting taxes. He would have to earn the trust and friendship of his fellow townsfolk. Surely all of this was less fun than that initial life-altering encounter with Jesus. He may have had trouble maintaining his enthusiasm.
It’s okay to not always feel excited about life as a follower of Jesus. Our faith journey can be like a long, successful marriage that starts out with the magic and passion of an early romance and develops into something calmer but deeper and more meaningful. There’s no getting around the fact that our relationship with Jesus requires hard work sometimes. But it’s good to know that he is always with us, ready to give us the grace we need.
Our attempts to follow Jesus don’t have to be big, splashy gestures like Zacchaeus’ initial response. Change will be gradual, and there will be setbacks, but with Jesus’ help, our efforts will bear fruit.
“Jesus, help me to follow you with childlike trust.