Americans invited to honor St. Thomas Becket’s martyrdom – Catholic Philly

A stained glass window of St. Thomas Becket is seen at St. Alban’s Cathedral in St. Albans, England. (CNS picture/Gene Plaisted, The Crosiers)

WASHINGTON (CNS) — The White Home issued a proclamation honoring the 850th anniversary of the martyrdom of St. Thomas Becket Dec. 29 and alluring “the folks of america to watch the day in faculties and church buildings and customary locations of assembly with acceptable ceremonies.”

The proclamation, signed by President Donald Trump Dec. 28, described Becket as “a statesman, a scholar, a chancellor, a priest, an archbishop and a lion of spiritual liberty.”

A London-born clerk to Archbishop Theobald of Canterbury, St. Thomas studied canon regulation overseas and was ordained a deacon. His help of Henry II’s declare to England’s throne led to his appointment as royal chancellor.

However he and the king clashed over many points, notably the jurisdiction of ecclesiastical courts. Becket fled to France for six years; quickly after his return, Henry’s want to be rid of this troublesome prelate led to Thomas’ homicide by 4 knights.

The White Home proclamation described this martyrdom as “an occasion that modified the course of historical past” and which “finally led to quite a few constitutional limitations on the ability of the state over the church throughout the West.”

It additionally mentioned Becket’s demise “serves as a robust and timeless reminder to each American that our freedom from spiritual persecution will not be a mere luxurious or accident of historical past, however moderately an important factor of our liberty.”

It urged Individuals to “rejoice and revere” the saint’s brave stand for spiritual liberty and to reaffirm efforts to finish spiritual persecution worldwide.

The White Home acknowledged spiritual believers all over the place who are suffering persecution for his or her religion, significantly Cardinal Joseph Zen of Hong Kong and Pastor Wang Yi of Chengdu, China, describing them as “tireless witnesses to hope.”

“To honor Thomas Becket’s reminiscence, the crimes towards folks of religion should cease, prisoners of conscience should be launched, legal guidelines limiting freedom of faith and perception should be repealed and the susceptible, the defenseless and the oppressed should be protected,” the proclamation mentioned, including that the “tyranny and homicide that shocked the conscience of the Center Ages must not ever be allowed to occur once more. “

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