In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit
As St Thomas Becket sought justice, giving up his life to God’s will, let us be courageous in sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Read from the Gospel of St Luke 22:24-30:
‘….the greatest among you must behave as if he were the youngest, the leader as if he were the one who serves.’
It is 850 years since the death of St Thomas Becket, who, when an ordained deacon, was appointed by King Henry II to be Chancellor of England. He was later ordained as priest and then Archbishop of Canterbury, and resigned as Chancellor. He underwent a surprising conversion, leading an ascetic lifestyle with prayer and humility. This brought him into conflict with the King, which led to his murder. He quickly became widely venerated as a Saint across Europe, and is Patron of Parish Clergy. St Thomas is an example for all those in public service who look to keep God’s will at the heart of their work.
Pope Francis tells us:
‘the nativity scene has invited us to “feel” and “touch” the poverty that God’s Son took upon himself in the Incarnation. Implicitly, it summons us to follow him along the path of humility, poverty and self-denial that leads from the manger of Bethlehem to the cross. It asks us to meet him and serve him by showing mercy to those of our brothers and sisters in greatest need ‘
We pray for bishops, priests and deacons. St Thomas, support us in our prayers for those who lead us through the trials of life, as we journey towards the joys of the next, revealed to us by Jesus born in a stable.
Keep the priests and deacons of your parish in your prayers; during this week, make a point of thanking them for all their work.