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  • Writer's pictureBishop Mesrop Parsamyan

All Saints' Day

In the cathedral, a nine-year-old girl was mesmerized by the vibrant stained glass windows. Curiously, she pointed to each one, turning to her aunt to ask, "Who's that?" The questions followed one after another, identifying Saint John, Saint Peter, Saint Sahag, and Saint Mary until a moment of clarity dawned on her. With a triumphant expression, she exclaimed, "Now I know what a saint is! A saint is a person the light shines through!”

As the Armenian Church celebrates the Feast of All Saints, the old and the new, the known and the unknown, this story illustrates the nature of holiness that we honor today—sainthood not as a remote status but as a living, breathing testament of divine light.

This feast reminds us that sainthood is not the exclusive domain of the extraordinary—those canonized and celebrated through the ages—rather, it is the ordinary life lived with extraordinary love. It is to love God and to see God in all, to serve without seeking reward, and to offer oneself as a living testament to the Gospel. Saints, both known and unknown, old and new, who allowed the Light of Christ to permeate their beings and radiate through their lives.

As we honor all the saints, we are called to reflect upon the transparency of our own souls. Are we allowing God’s grace to cleanse the windows of our hearts so His light might shine through us? The stories of saints inspire us to be vessels of that same light, to illuminate the dark corners of our society with acts of compassion and mercy: to love, to forgive, to offer mercy, and to speak truth.

Moreover, this feast calls us to recognize the saints walking among us, the unnamed and unnoticed—people whose everyday goodness and unspoken heroism reflect the light of Christ. Just as the young girl in the cathedral learned, sanctity is not just in being known but in knowing Him and being transformed by His love.

May this Feast of All Saints renew in us the desire for holiness and the courage to live out our faith in the world.

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