Today's Feast (August 29): Beheading of St John Baptist

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Saint John the Baptist, having spoken out against the adulterous and incestuous relationship Herod was having with his brother's wife Herodias, was imprisoned and subsequently beheaded.

John preached repentance from sins, and therefore was very unpopular in his day. Nonetheless, like Jeremiah and other prophets before him, he preached the commandments of God before men.

May the LORD give us the grace to be bold witnesses for the Faith, to maintain the standards of biblical morality, and to embrace the words God spoke to Jeremiah,

"Be not dismayed at their faces: lest I confound thee before them. For, behold, I have made thee this day a defenced city, and an iron pillar, and brasen wall against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, against the princes thereof, against the priests thereof, and against the people of the land." (The day's Epistle, pages E 109-110, The People's Anglican Missal)

The accompanying picture was created by artist Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (29 September 1571 – 18 July 1610)

Catholic Encyclopedia article
The day's propers

Books Worth Considering
Fox's Book of Martyrs
Reason Is Beguiled: On the Mystery of Martyrdom & of Total Self Gift
By Their Blood: Christian Martyrs of the Twentieth Century
Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church

The Concise Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
The Oxford Dictionary of Saints (Oxford Paperback Reference)amazon
The Penguin Dictionary of Saints: Third Edition (Dictionary, Penguin)amazon