Carrying the Torch
With next Friday being the 440th anniversary of the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre, I took a closer look at one of the biggest missions I have for this blog: To bring little-known martyrs to light, to lift up the names of those who gave their lives for Christ by clinging to the tenets of the Protestant Reformation. Often I do not know exactly where to look, but today I found a list I had kept of known victims of the St. Bartholomew’s. My eyes fell on Felix La Rue or Le Roux.
He was somewhere around fifty years of age and was the son of Henry, who was thought to be a clandestine child of King Francis I. Felix supposedly had a young son who escaped. I do not know what he looked like or what he did in life; yet when my eyes fell on the name, when I realized that someone was seeing his name four hundred years after he was silenced and forgotten, I felt a great sense of elation. Then I had an interesting idea: “Adopt a martyr.”
Yes, it sounds odd. It is not meant to be an official title. But remember how people chose a POW / MIA soldier to “adopt,” to receive a picture and / or information about that person? Or when you sponser a child and are sent periodic letters, photos, and other mementoes? Or when a child “adopts” a pen-pal from another country? Adopt a few martyrs. Pick obscure people (or famous, it does not matter) from a personally-meaningful event in history such as the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre, the French Wars of Religion, persecution of the Anabaptists in Switzerland or Germany, persecution of the Anglican martyrs, etc. These people could also be ancestors. Learn everything you can and write a little something about them. Keep their memories alive. Make it so they did not die to be forgotten, but rather that their lives, their dreams, and their hopes might be remembered.
When we struggle with witnessing or with keeping the faith, we should remember our adopted martyrs. And for those who choose ancestors, remember that their blood runs in your veins. If they could have the strength, courage, and steadfastness to put Christ above all else, we can as well.
(c) 2012 Joyously Saved