Friday, June 22, 2012

SS. John Fisher and Thomas More, Pray for Us!

In 1982, Blessed John Paul II went on an apostolic journey to Great Britain. This was the first time in history that a Bishop of Rome had ever set foot on English soil. In a homily given during his visit, John Paul II said that he was deeply moved by this thought and that he was happy to finally celebrate Mass in this country with “a tradition embedded in the history of Christian civilization.”
This history was built by outstanding members of the Church, two of whom John Paul II recognized specifically:
John Fisher, the Cambridge scholar of Renaissance learning, became Bishop of Rochester. He is an example to all Bishops in his loyalty to the faith and in his devoted attention to the people of his diocese, especially the poor and the sick. Thomas More was a model layman living the Gospel to the full. He was a fine scholar and an ornament to his profession, a loving husband and father, humble in prosperity, courageous in adversity, humorous and godly. Together they served God and their country - Bishop and layman. Together they died, victims of an unhappy age. Today we have the grace, all of us, to proclaim their greatness and to thank God for giving such men to England.
Both St. John Fisher and St. Thomas More were “victims of an unhappy age,” indeed. In 1535, both were beheaded because they resisted in the matter of King Henry’s VIII’s divorce. We should be inspired by their courage, especially during a time when Americans can no longer take their right to religious liberty for granted.

The U.S. Bishops honored the feast of these two great saints yesterday by launching the Fortnight for Freedom. Look to see how you can get involved in your diocese, and join the U.S. Bishops in this prayer for the Protection of Religious Liberty:
O God our Creator,
Through the power and working of your Holy Spirit,
you call us to live out our faith in the midst of the world,
bringing the light and the saving truth of the Gospel
to every corner of society.
We ask you to bless us
in our vigilance for the gift of religious liberty.
Give us the strength of mind and heart
to readily defend our freedoms when they are threatened;
give us courage in making our voices heard
on behalf of the rights of your Church
and the freedom of conscience of all people of faith.
Grant, we pray, O heavenly Father,
a clear and united voice to all your sons and daughters
gathered in your Church
in this decisive hour in the history of our nation,
so that, with every trial withstood
and every danger overcome—
for the sake of our children, our grandchildren,
and all who come after us—
this great land will always be "one nation, under God,
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
We ask this through Christ our Lord.

No comments:

Post a Comment