We forget, or at least I do, that the martyrs of England and Wales, whilst dying for the faith, in particular died for the traditional Latin Mass, that was at the heart, in so many instances, of their refusal to accept the Book of Common Prayer.
|Blessed John Almond - "hated carnal sins"|
But had they lived in 2011 they would have also opposed recognition of a union between two same sex adults as being anything approaching a 'marriage'.
In fact, I believe that this would become for them, as much an issue worth surrendering one's life for as the preservation of the Mass of all Time.
Traditional Catholics appreciate the fact that their stance relates not to the Latin Mass per se but also to a whole host of other issues which impact on doctrinal truths, the recognition of homosexual acts and union being just one of them.
Blessed John Almond won his martyr's crown at Tyburn this day in 1612.
Here is an account of his last moments:
"On the scaffold he flung some seven or eight pounds of silver, with his beads, his points, and his discipline, for those to get them who would, and gave to the hangman an Angel, not to spare him but to treat him as he should.
He had come hither, he said, to shed his blood for his Saviour's sake, who had shed His blood for his sins. In which respect he wished that every drop that he would shed might be a thousand; that he might have St Lawrence's gridiron to be broiled on, St Peter's cross to be hanged on, St Stephen's stones to be stoned with, to be ript (ripped) ript, ript and ript again.
He was stripped down to his shirt in front of the mob and, kneeling down he prayed: "In manus tuas, Domine...." being: "Into Thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit" - he waited till the hangman was ready without any sign of fear; but, ever smiling, he protested he died chaste, but not through his own ability or worthiness but by Christ's special grace, and that he ever hated those carnal sins, for which the Catholic religion had been slandered.
At last the cart was drawn away, and with the words "Jesu, Jesu", his soul flew to Him for whom he shed his blood".
Tyburn 5th December 1612.
And from the Archbishop of Westminster in December 2011 a clarification of the statement made on 24th November...
“Clearly, respect must be shown to those who in the situation in England use a civil partnership to bring stability to a relationship,” the archbishop said, qualifying that while “equality is very important and there should be no unjust discrimination,” that “commitment plus equality do not equal marriage.”
"....Same-sex partnerships are not marriage because they have no root in a sexual relationship, which marriage does,” he explained. “And that’s the distinction that I think it’s important for us to understand, that marriage is built on the sexual partnership between a man and a woman which is open to children to their nurture and education.”
So while the bishops of England and Wales “respect the existence of same-sex partnerships in law,” he said, “the point we are at now is to say that they are not the same as marriage.”
I think Blessed John Almond might have stated the teachings of the faith a little more clearly and definitely, without any lack of charity.
Father John Almond -
Ora pro nobis - Pray for England and Wales - Pray for the Faith