Lifelong CatechesisForming Catholic identity across generations
During the Christmas season from December 24th until the Sunday after Epiphany, we reflect upon the mystery of love that is made visible in the birth and early childhood of Christ.
Thomas Becket, Bishop and Martyr
Thomas Becket was the son of the sheriff of London, and was well educated. His parents died when he was twenty-one, and he went to work for a relative in London. Later, he joined the household of a local bishop, and was eventually ordained and then made Archbishop of Canterbury himself. As Archbishop, he gave up the rich life style of England’s rulers and adopted instead an austere life, centered in prayer. He was known for his generosity to the poor and greatly assisted King Henry in formulating the reforms in the justice system that were instituted during his tenure. He was forced by his own conscience to come into conflict with the King, who was later murdered Thomas in his cathedral at Canterbury.
Thomas Becket is an excellent example of someone who made drastic life changes in order to follow his calling. Although his personality and methods could be offensive to others, he lived by what he believed was right.