No sooner are our Christmas day celebrations over, than the Church brings us face to face with martyrdom, in the person of St. Stephen, it’s his Feast today, and the Holy Innocents.  It seems that the Word made Flesh attracts enraged, deadly opposition. 
That was true then and it’s true now, with more Christians dying for their faith than at any other time in history. Of course the secular governments of the West are complicit in this, not least in their refusal to protect the Christians of the Middle East.
Be that as it may, here’s the Collect for the day:


GRANT, O Lord, that, in all our sufferings here upon earth for the testimony of thy truth, we may stedfastly look up to heaven, and by faith behold the glory that shall be revealed; and, being filled with the Holy Ghost, may learn to love and bless our persecutors by the example of thy first Martyr Saint Stephen, who prayed for his murderers to thee, O blessed Jesus, who standest at the right hand of God to succour all those who suffer for thee, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.

Tyson Fury

St. Stephen, pray for us, and I wish everyone a happy Boxing Day.
God bless,
LSP