Archive for December 29th, 2020

Feast of Thomas Becket

Close your eyes, breathe, and clear your mind. Be still. Center your scattered senses on God’s presence.

SCRIPTURE: 1 John 2:3-6

We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. But if anyone obeys his word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.


Thomas Becket (1119-1170), Archbishop of Canterbury, was murdered in his cathedral by the soldiers of King Henry II on this day in 1170. Because of the great shock and sensation that his martyrdom caused at a time when all of Europe was Catholic, the Roman church, in the 13th century, assigned the celebration of his feast within the privileged days of Christmastide. During the Middle Ages, the shrine of St. Thomas Becket at Canterbury was the third most important shrine in Europe, after Rome and Santiago de Compostela. His death resulted in a rallying of enormous pressure against the king. Becket became a symbol of liberation against tyranny, a symbol of the integrity and independence of the church from an oppressive government. In the words of Rozann Lee, a contemporary Christian writer, “The grace, strength, and courage that defined this and all other martyrdoms throughout church history is not a virtuous and bold act of bravery made in a single moment. It is the fruitful manifestation of a willful decision to accept the grace of Christ and painfully allow it to transform one’s life.”

COLLECT:  Written by Collects are short general prayers used in Christian liturgy to draw our focus of worship.  The collect today is from The  Episcopal Church Book of Common Prayer.

O God, our strength and our salvation, you called your servant Thomas Becket to be a shepherd of your people and a defender of your church; Keep your household from all evil and raise up faithful pastors and leaders who are wise in the ways of the gospel; through Jesus Christ, the shepherd of our souls, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Click on the link to see and hear the music video.

MUSIC VIDEO:  BBC Radio: St. Thomas Honour We.  From BBC program “Britain’s Cathedrals and Their Music” This is a medieval song that honors Thomas Becket.

IMAGE: 13th century illumination depicting Thomas Becket’s assassination

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