On this day, the Sunday after Pentecost, we celebrate the Feast of All Saints who shone throughout the inhabited earth, in Asia, Libya, Europe, America, North and South, East and West.
All the friends of my Lord do I hymn.
If any would, let him make mention of them all.
On this Sunday, which follows immediately after Holy Pentecost, the Divine Fathers ordained that we should celebrate the memory of all the Saints who have existed throughout the world.
Initially, the most ancient Fathers made this a Feast solely of the Martyrs who suffered throughout the world, as attested by the encomium of Saint John Chrysostom, in which he praises only the Martyrs. The later Fathers, however, made this Feast more general, calling it the “Sunday of All Saints”, including in it Patriarchs, Prophets, Apostles, Martyrs, Hierarchs, Ascetics, and all the Righteous together, of every age and race.
Guided by the teaching of the Divine Scriptures and the Apostolic Tradition, we, the Faithful, honor all the friends of God, the Saints, as keepers of God’s commandments, as shining examples of virtue, and as benefactors of the human race. We honor each of the known Saints specially on one particular day of the year, as is evident from the Menologion; but since many are unknown, as we said previously, and since their number has multiplied from time to time, is still multiplying, and will not cease increasing until the end of the world, for this reason our Mother, the Church, has ordained that we should hold, once a year, a general commemoration of all the Saints, which is the present Feast.
By the intercessions of Thine Immaculate Mother, O Christ God, and of all Thy Saints from all ages, have mercy on us and save us, as Thou alone art good and lovest mankind. Amen.