Okay… we have the BIG MO, BABY!
Bring back our BLACK! has a little more support.
A kind reader alerted me to a weekly letter to his flock by His Excellency Most Reverend R. Walter Nickless of Sioux City, Iowa.
Get this! Here is the relevant section but do go read what else the bishop has to say. Pretty good stuff.
My emphases and comments.
There is a clear connection between this Feast and the Feast of All Souls which follows it on Sunday, November 2nd. We know that, although God’s mercy is greater than our sinfulness, still we have the choice to reject His gifts. Most of us live and die struggling to accept fully the gracious gift of faith and mercy. We are not ready for Heaven, for seeing God "as He really is," because we have not seen or loved Him clearly enough in this life. We need more scouring.
Part of how we receive this scouring or "purging" after death is by the prayers of the faithful still sojourning. [That’s where we come in.] We have a duty in this life, born of our unity in Christ, to pray for the dead, for the purifying fire of God’s merciful love to purge them of the heaviness of sin. This duty is one of the spiritual works of mercy. So important is this duty, that the Church uses an entire day to remind us of it each year. Remember, then, that none of us can make become saints without the hard work, not only of ourselves, but of many others also. One of the hardest forms of this sanctifying work is to learn to love and pray for all, especially for our enemies, even after their death. "For if you love those who love you, what reward shall you have? Even the tax-collectors do this. And if you greet your own family only, what more have you done? Even the heathens do this. Therefore, be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect." (Mt 5:46-8). All of us would do well to continue to pray for the souls in purgatory. We hope that many will pray for us as well when we die. [You can say that again.]
[WATCH THIS] Black is a traditional color of the Church’s vestments that may be worn on All Souls Day. It can also be worn at Masses for the dead. As a liturgical color, black symbolizes mourning and penitence, sorrow and solemnity. [Death to the allurements of this world.] This is exactly the spirit we are trying to cultivate on the Feast of All Souls, when we pray for the salvation of the dead. [Oh my HEAVENS! Did you get that? This is a modern bishop in the USA, folks. Kindly note that he connects what should be our proper attitude and BLACK VESTMENTS. But wait… THERE’S MORE!] It is appropriate, then, to use the external symbols suitable to help us cultivate the proper internal reality. Black vestments help us to remember to pray for all the dead, [% SOUND.TRUMPETS.HERE %] not just our own beloved dead. Black vestments help remind us of the inestimable worth of the divine gift of life, in this world and in the next. This year, for this feast, I will be wearing black vestments. [YES!] Hopefully, this sign will remind us of our need to face death with all its pain and mourning, but also remind us of the resurrected life to follow.
All I can say is…
[I want photos.]