Join us at Emmanuel Episcopal Church to celebrate All-Hallowtide, a three day celebration of all Saints and All Souls:

 •Saturday, October 31, All Hallows Eve, from 3pm Great Pumpkin Labyrinth Walk with treats for children and adults who walk the labyrinth.

 •Saturday, October 31 at 6pm Spanish Eucharist to celebrate the Eve of All Saints or Todos los Santos. The Latino community will erect a traditional altar of the Day of the Dead. People are invited to bring a small photo of a deceased loved one to place at the altar and/or an image of your favorite saint.

 •Sunday, November 1 at 8am and 10am Eucharist of the Day of All Saints.

 •Monday, November 2 at 6pm bilingual Evening Prayer to celebrate the day of the Faithful Departed or All Souls Day. Join us as we pray for our loved ones who have gone before us.

 •Monday, November 2 at 7pm we will be showing at the parish hall the 2014 animated film Book of Life, directed by Jorge Gutierrez. This film is classified PG. This is a free film and all are welcome.

 For some the reality of death brings forth fear or awe, for others it brings hope and comfort. However we look at death, the truth is that no one is indifferent before it. Many religions try to offer an answer to the question of what happens to us when we die.

 Christians face death, their own and that of their loved ones, from the perspective of their experience of Jesus after his crucifixion. For them, the one who they had met and followed, who had been killed by the political and religious powers of the time, had transcended death and ordinary life into a new reality: the resurrection. This experience of their friend and teacher who was now alive in a new and wondrous way, spoke to them and their experience of their own death: in fact Christ has been raised from the dead. Since death came through a human being [Adam], the resurrection of the dead came through one too. In the same way that everyone dies in Adam, so also everyone will be given life in Christ (1Cor 15:20-22). The relationship of Christians with death was celebrated every year on Easter Day by rejoicing in the experience of the first Christians that testified that the Jesus who was crucified was alive. This celebration is repeated every Sunday of the year, which is the reason most Christians meet on Sunday for their main worship service.

 Christians also began to celebrate the life of those followers of Jesus who had died, especially those who had died for their faith, as martyrs. These celebrations where held on the day of the death of the martyr, not on the day of their birth. For Christians, their death was their birth to the eternal life. It is believed by many scholars that the commemoration of all the saints on November first originated in Ireland, spread from there to England, and then to the continent of Europe. Some scholars believe that the date of November the first came by influence of the Pagan Celtic celebration of Samhain, halfway between the winter solstice and the fall equinox.

 The celebration of All Saints focuses, as one of the prayers of the day from the Book of Common Prayer (BCP) of the Episcopal Church asks God, that we may always be supported by this fellowship of love and prayer, and know ourselves to be surrounded by their witness to your power and mercy (3rd Collect of Common of a Saint BCP p. 250). So the feast of All Saints focuses on two aspects: being in fellowship with these heroes of the Christian faith and also to trust in their prayers on our behalf.

 Beginning in the tenth century, it became customary to set aside another day—as a sort of extension of All Saints—on which the Church remembered that vast body of the faithful who, though no less members of the company of the redeemed, are unknown in the wider fellowship of the Church. It was also a day for particular remembrance of family members and friends. In the Catechism of the Episcopal Church we are asked: Why do we pray for the dead? The answer being: We pray for them, because we still hold them in our love, and because we trust that in God’s presence those who have chosen to serve God will grow in God’s love, until they see God as God is. (BCP p. 862).

 Join us at Emmanuel Episcopal Parish to celebrate these feasts!