Thursday, December 02, 2004

Campion's Brag

December 1st, Feast of St. Edmund Campion.

Here's a portion of Campion's famous "brag" in which he defied the might and power of England, and chose to freely live and preach the Catholic faith in a realm where to do so was forbidden.

"And touching our Society, be it known to you that we have made a league—all the Jesuits in the world, whose succession and multitude must overreach all the practice of England—cheerfully to carry the cross you shall lay upon us, and never to despair your recovery, while we have a man left to enjoy your Tyburn, or to be racked with your torments, or consumed with your prisons. The expense is reckoned, the enterprise is begun; it is of God; it cannot be withstood. So the faith was planted: So it must be restored."

What inspired such faith? What could do so today? Campion was offered a prime position in the Church of England, by the Queen herself,if he wopuld recant his position. Yet he refused and went to his death instead. He believed. How can we exemplify such faith today without linking it to denominational fundamentalism? How can we firmly believe and preach the truth of Christ while remaininmg open for dialogue and conversion wit those of other faiths? The challenges of the 21st century are fascinating, but never easy.

As we enter fully into Advent, let us pray for peace.


Blogger kate said...

No question that Campion and associates were brave men. But usually they were executed only after they had been thrown out of England and had returned many times.

Pope Pius V excommunicated Elizabeth I and openly declared her to be not only heretical and illegitimate, but also

the unlawful heir to the British throne.

the latter point is the most important, in that it clearly incited to treason.

By doing this, he put English Catholics in a very difficult position. There were many plots against Elizabeth's life during her reign, which ended only upon her reluctant execution of her foolish cousin Mary, Queen of Scots, a Catholic, who would have been next in line for the throne, around whom all the Catholic plots centered.

Elizabeth was immensely popular, as her Catholic half-sister, Mary, was hated. Mary burned alive over 350 dissenters during her relatively short reign,and married an extremely unpopular man, Phillip II of Spain, who unsuccessfully tried to persuade her to back off the constant procession of burnings.

when one of the Jesuit saints--I forget which one--proclaimed from the scaffold, that he had supported no treason other than his fidelity to Rome, someone shouted from the crowd:

"In Rome, all treason is contained!"

Check your history, dude.

Sat Feb 17, 12:19:00 PM 2007  

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