Monday, August 29, 2011
Beheading of John the Baptist, Martyr
Today, August 29th, the Church honors the martyrdom of Saint John the Baptist.
From The Gospel of Mark (6: 20 - 28).
". . . for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and kept him safe. When he heard him, he was much perplexed; and yet he heard him gladly. But an opportunity came when Herod on his birthday gave a banquet for his courtiers and officers and the leading men of Galilee. For when Herodias' daughter came in and danced, she pleased Herod and his guests; and the king said to the girl, "Ask me whatever you wish, and I will grant it." And he vowed to her, "Whatever you ask me, I will give you, even half of my kingdom." And she went out, and said to her mother, "What shall I ask?" And she said, "The head of John the baptizer." And she came in immediately with haste to the king, and asked, saying, "I want you to give me at once the head of John the Baptist on a platter." And the king was exceedingly sorry; but because of his oaths and his guests he did not want to break his word to her. And immediately the king sent a soldier of the guard and gave orders to bring his head. He went and beheaded him in the prison, and brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl; and the girl gave it to her mother."
PRAYER: "GOD OUR FATHER, YOU CALLED JOHN THE BAPTIST TO BE THE HERALD OF YOUR SON'S BIRTH AND DEATH. AS HE GAVE HIS LIFE IN WITNESS TO TRUTH AND JUSTICE, SO MAY WE STRIVE TO PROFESS OUR FAITH IN YOUR GOSPEL. GRANT THIS THROUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, YOUR SON, WHO LIVES AND REIGNS WITH YOU AND THE HOLY SPIRIT, ONE GOD, FOR EVER AND EVER. AMEN.