One of the more difficult liturgical functions is the transition from a joyful, glorious celebration like Christmas to celebrating a martyr’s feast day. After all the fun of Christmas Day we are brought into a reality that we do not often think about. We might some day be called to be martyrs. I pray that does not happen.
But in first century Jerusalem, there was much bitterness and hatred for the new Christians. Both Jews and Gentiles despised this new religion. And whatever they could do to stop its growth they were determined to do just that.
Still, this is life. One moment we can be celebrating and then receive devastating news. As disciples Jesus calls us to do the best we can with what we have. We will not be perfect, we will not fail, but we can trust the Holy Spirit will give us the words and the strength to make it through. Our Lord, Jesus Christ, suffered and died for us. Jesus will walk with us.
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen