Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Phillip Howard, gained his Martyr's crown this day in 1595

Married at the age of twelve he gradually entered into the lifestyle of Elizabeth's court, squandering money in the pursuit of many vices.
However, he witnessed Edmund Campion's dispute with a Protestant minister in the Tower of London and this re-awakened his faith. His wife then became a Catholic but Phillip was arrested by the Queen's men while trying to flee the country (knowing that he had made the fatal move from Queen's favoured courtier to Catholic Recusant).
Elizabeth had him confined to the Tower and eventually he was tried and convicted on a trumped up charge of High Treason. The sentence of death was never carried out but he spent some eleven years cramped in a cell in the Tower with no access to his wife, children or a priest. Reputedly, his cell emanated a 'pestilential stench.'
He remained strong in his Faith until the end when a combination of physical abuse and neglect resulted in dysentry from which he died.
He inscribed upon his cell wall the words:
"The more of suffering for Christ in this life, the more of glory with Christ in the next."
Phillip Howard - ora pro nobis

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