all souls day | a day of remembrance & celebration

Two years ago, I married my best friend on the 2nd of November. Primarily celebrated by Catholics (myself included), All Souls day is a holy day set aside for commemorating the faithful departed. Actually, the whole month of November is reserved to praying for all the faithful departed. As a member of the Church, one has the privilege of helping the Holy Souls in purgatory to enter heaven — through almsgiving, prayer, and works of penance undertaken on behalf of the dead (CCC 1032). Saint Augustine gives weight to the importance of our participation: “It cannot be doubted that the prayers of the Church relieve the holy souls, and move God to treat them with more clemency than their sins deserve.”

Okay, so you’re probably asking yourself, “Why would you get married on a day honoring the dead, Ashley?” Well, though it may strike some as odd, let me briefly explain:

When we got engaged, we immediately turned our attention to God. Asa proposed to me on January 1 of 2013 and it was the Feast Day of Mary, Mother of God. We then decided to pray a Novena for the next nine days, focusing on our love and God’s presence within that love & our lives. We asked for many blessings, but most of all, the guidance of His hand as we embarked on a new journey together – let His will be done.

After the initial spreading of our good news, receiving phone calls and cards, we began to enter “wedding planning mode.” Obviously, one of the big decisions we had to make was the date on which to get married. At first, we thought September would be a good month because it was a relatively “free” month in terms of other events like family birthdays and anniversaries. Also, our grandparents who have passed away all did so within the month of September. We really wanted to honor them and their love & dedication to their spouses & families. But ultimately, given that we would therefore have to plan a wedding within seven-eight months, we decided that more time would be best. We then searched for other date possibilities and began considering November 2 — a day where we could honor our deceased loved ones and almost “dedicate” our wedding to them…and also have a couple more months for planning.

So there you go.

All of this is to simply say ‘Happy 2nd Anniversary!’ to my beloved. To our grandparents and all the faithful departed: we miss you & we are praying for you!

dsc_5765DSC_0482 DSC_2041DSC_0718DSC_1158 DSC_2096 DSC_2121DSC_2153dsc_6644dsc_6673dsc_6648DSC_0872I promise to be true to you, in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life.

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