Thursday, June 23, 2005
The patron saint of politicians
Do you know the patron saint of politicians? (Neither did I.) It's Santo Tomás Moro, and yesterday at the church that bears his name they celebrated mass. Few Mexican politicians attended, but among those that did, was the new Secretary of State (fmr Secretary of Labor), Abascal. Two other members of the cabinet, a senator, and a subsecretary attened the mass also.
posted by Michelle @ 8:41 AM,
- At 6/24/2005 1:25 PM, said...
St. Thomas More
Lord Chancellor of England, author, and martyr, born in London, February 7, 1477 or 78, executed at Tower Hill, July 6, 1535.
Studied at Oxford, and then studied the law student in London. He thought of the priesthood, but, as his friend Erasmus wrote of him, “The one thing that prevented him from giving himself to that kind of life was that he could not shake off the desire of the married state. He chose, therefore, to be a chaste husband rather than an impure priest.” He became a successful barrister and Member of Parliament.
In 1510 he was made Under-Sheriff of London, and four years later was chosen by Cardinal Wolsey as one of an embassy to Flanders to protect the interests of English merchants. He published his Utopia in 1516. That same year the King made him a member of an embassy to Calais and he became a privy councillor. In 1521 King Henry knighted him. In 1523 he was elected Speaker of the House of Commons; and became High Steward of Cambridge University and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in 1525.
In 1529, he became Chancellor of England, a post never before held by a layman. When Henry issued a royal proclamation ordering the clergy to acknowledge Henry as "Supreme Head" of the Church "as far as the law of God will permit," More offer to resign as chancellor, and offer the King refused. His opposition to Henry's objectives regarding divorce, papal supremacy, and the laws against heretics, speedily lost him royal favor. In May 1532, he resigned his post of Lord Chancellor after holding it less than three years.
In March 1534, Parliament passed the Act of Succession, which required all who should be called upon to take an oath acknowledging Henry’s children by Anne Boleyn as legitimate heirs to the throne and repudiating "any foreign authority, prince or potentate." On 14 April, More was summoned to take the oath and, on his refusal, was committed to the custody of the Abbot of Westminster and then sent to the Tower. More was indicted for treason on July 1, 1535. The jury found him guilty and Henry ordered him beheaded on Tower Hill. He was executed on July 6.
Pope Leo XIII beatified Thomas More in 1886. Pope Pius XI canonized him in 1935.