It’s the Feast of All Saints tomorrow — one of my favorite solemnities! As it approaches each year, my thoughts go to a mental image of all the saints around the throne of God, and I always feel a bit overwhelmed with emotion. The other day I happened to be listening to Sara Groves’ song “When the Saints Go Marching In,” and the lyrics evoked that familiar, stirring response in me. I thought I would share a few of the lines. Groves’ is talking about what she sees in her mind when she thinks about “all who’ve gone before and lived a faithful life:”
I see the long quiet walk along the Underground Railroad,
I see the slave awakening to the value of her soul.I see the young missionary and the angry spear,
I see his family returning with no trace of fear.I see the long hard shadows of Calcutta nights,
I see the sisters standing by the dying man’s side.I see the young girl huddled on the brothel floor,
I see the man with a passion come kicking down that door.I see the man of sorrow and his long troubled road,
I see the world on his shoulders and my easy load.And when the Saints go marching in,
I want to be one of them.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing. (2 Tim. 4:7-8)
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