--from “Invocation for All Saints Day” by James Lancaster, published in Equal Rites
gay rights pioneer
Died Oct. 11, 2011
Suicide brought attention to gay bullying
Died Sept. 18, 2011
In memory of
Harvard minister, gay African American, LGBT rights advocate
Died Feb. 28, 2011
In memory of
Ugandan LGBT rights activist
Murdered Jan. 26, 2011
Rev. Elder Jean White
Metropolitan Community Churches elder from London
Died Nov. 8, 2010
Dr. Ken Blair
Pioneering AIDS doctor in Austin, Texas
Died Nov. 1, 2010
“The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of the saints,
went up before God from the angel’s hand.”
-- Revelation 8:4
In memory of: Tyler Clementi, Seth Walsh, Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase, Asher Brown, Cody J. Barker, Harrison Chase Brown, Caleb Nolt; Billy Lucas, Jeanine Blanchette, Chantal Dube and all other gay and lesbian youths who have committed suicide. Gwen Araujo, Rita Hester, Brandon Teena and all others who were killed due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. Harvey Milk, Matthew Shepard, Alan Schindler and all others who were murdered in homophobic violence. Jill Johnston, Mary Daly, and all lesbians whodied in 2010. Rock Hudson, Rev. Ron Russell-Coons, Rev. Jim Sandmire, Rev. Howard Wells and all others who died of AIDS. And for all saints and all souls, named and unnamed.
Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow;
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain;
I am the gentle Autumn's rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush.
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft star that shines at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there; I did not die.
|Candles from Wikimedia Commons|
In Catholic and Protestant Christianity, the Feast of All Saints commemorates all saints, known and unknown. The following day, the Feast of All Souls, pays respect to the faithful departed who have not yet reached heaven. Prayers are offered to ask the saints to help the living, and to offer help to the souls of deceased friends and family.
All Souls Day is celebrated in Latin America as the Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos). The holiday is especially popular in Mexico, where the happy celebration is one of the biggest events of the year.
All Saints Day used to be called All Hallows Day, and the preceding evening was the Eve of All Hallows, now celebrated as Halloween. These holidays are associated with the Celtic Festival of the Dead (Samhain). They grow out of the pagan belief that the souls of the dead return to visit at this time of year.
LGBT Saints Series