Whenever Halloween falls on a Sunday you get three days when Catholics attend Mass in a row.
First you get the normal Sunday mass, the holy day of obligation that all Catholics should be attending. (If you call yourself Catholic and don’t attend Mass, consider calling yourself something else or get thee to confession.)
Second you have the feast of All saints, November 1st. The day where we remember those who have come before us who have fought the good fight. The canonized saint and frankly the much more numerous uncanonized saints whose presence in heaven we do not directly know of. The Anchoress nails it (no surprise)
That is a holy day of obligation that I particularly love, because there is an intimacy to it. In blustery weather, usually damp and chill, the Catholics troop to mass and remember those who came before us. It’s like spiritually visiting the graves of our beloved. We remember the stories and remember where we have come from, and that helps us to remember who we are. It helps remind us that we want to keep walking the straight, narrow path that will unite us all before the throne!
And finally All souls day Nov 2nd election day, when we remember those souls in purgatory. It is a very important day and our attention to it is both charitable (helping souls progress) and smart (the holy souls in purgatory can in fact pray for us) and pragmatic (the day may come where we may find ourselves there).
Many lazy Catholics use purgatory as their emergency backup plan (I was once one) figuring it was easier to shoot for purgatory than heaven. This is a losing proposition as you start to make excuses for your behavior, it’s nearly as bad as the “once saved” crowd (I actually knew a man who was planning on beating someone up who said it was ok because he was already saved) All souls day is a constant reminder that we need to do better, try harder and as St. Paul said, finish the race.
These are three days where Catholics should take advantage of the season to contemplate eternity and to enlist help from the Saints who have followed that path.