…for tomorrow you may be stoned to death.
Happy Feast of St. Stephen. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the whole martyrdom thing. There are some days I totally get it. Bad days…ones where a Calgon bath won’t take me where I want to go. Days where I’d just like to see a fiery chariot descend and whisk me off to a better place. But since I know I’m not good enough for that first-class ticket, I’d gladly accept martyrdom on one of those days.
Of course, like the quote on Amy Welborn‘s sidebar, “She could never be a saint, but she thought she could be a martyr if they killed her quick,” even on those bad days, I’d want martyrdom under the best of circumstances: after confession, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, a good rosary for a plenary indulgance. Perhaps just after the Hail, Holy Queen: Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ…BANG! Instantaneous death from a sniper I never knew was watching me. Is that too much to ask?
Most of the time, though, I recoil from the idea of martyrdom. Burning at the stake, drowning, having eyes plucked out…just not things I really want to embrace. It’s a good thing we aren’t all called for that level of sacrifice. It’s also a good thing, though, that the Feast of St. Stephen is now, just as we are satiated with the love and warmth of this Christmas season. It is good to be merry, but ever in our minds must we remember that following this babe in the manger is a difficult path.
May the joy of the Savior’s birth sustain us on the journey.