One Minute Reflection – 22 June – The Memorial of St John Fisher (1469-1535) and St Thomas More (1478-1535) Martyrs
More than that, I even consider everything as a loss because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have accepted the loss of all things and I consider them so much refuse, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having any righteousness of my own based on the law but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God, depending on faith to know him and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by being conformed to his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead…Philippians 3:8-11
REFLECTION – “Although I know well, Margaret, that because of my past wickedness, I deserve to be abandoned by God, I cannot but trust in His merciful goodness. His grace has strengthened me until now and made me content to lose goods, land and life as well, rather than to swear against my conscience. God’s grace has given the king a gracious frame of mind toward me, so that as yet he has taken from me nothing but my liberty. In doing this His Majesty has done me such great good, with respect to spiritual profit, that I trust, that among all the great benefits he has heaped so abundantly upon me, I count my imprisonment the very greatest.
I cannot, therefore, mistrust the grace of God. By the merits of His bitter passion joined to mine and far surpassing in merit for me, all that I can suffer myself, His bounteous goodness, shall release me from the pains of purgatory and shall increase my reward in heaven besides.
I will not mistrust Him, Meg, though I shall feel myself weakening and on the verge of being overcome with fear. I shall remember, how Saint Peter at a blast of wind, began to sink because of his lack of faith and I shall do as he did, call upon Christ and pray to Him for help. And then I trust He shall place His holy hand on me and in the stormy seas, hold me up from drowning.
And finally, Margaret, I know this well, that without my fault He will not let me be lost. I shall, therefore, with good hope commit myself wholly to Him. And if He permits me to perish for my faults, then I shall serve as praise for His justice. But in good faith, Meg, I trust that His tender pity shall keep my poor soul safe and make me commendHhis mercy.
And, therefore, my own good daughter, do not let you mind be troubled over anything that shall happen to me in this world. Nothing can come but what God wills. And I am very sure, that whatever that be, however bad it may seem, it shall indeed be the best.” – from a letter written by Saint Thomas More from prison to his daughter Margaret
PRAYER – Almighty, ever-living God, You set the perfection of true faith in martyrdom. Strengthen us by the prayers of the martyrs, St Thomas More and St John Fisher , so that our lives may bear witness to the faith we profess. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.