As it was earlier in the year, in Lent and Eastertide, so public Masses have once more been suspended in British Columbia since late November. We hope to resume just after the Epiphany. The worship of God, however, did not cease. The Mass continues to be offered daily by the clergy of the parish, and I am blessed to have room to accommodate a small domestic oratory at home. Masses since Christ the King have been offered here and live streamed to parishioners. The photos above show Mass offered today for the Feast of St Stephen, Protomartyr. The poem, St Stephen, below, is written by the Anglican priest and academic, Leighton Pullan (1865-1940).
I see that I must die.
O Christ, how shall I bear the cruel stones
E’en though there be a place among the thrones
At thy right hand for me? Create again
The very sinews of my soul:
I asked not for an aureole,
But strength to bear the pain.
Help me, for life is dear:
The growing rapture of the summer morn,
The cedarded hills, and soft-cheeked roses born
Within the cooling breath of Hermon’s snow,
The rare reluctant shaded streams,
The sea that sings, and weeps, and dreams;
I love them: Thou dost know.
I loved my father’s faith:
The synagogue with all its sacred gear,
The feasts that guard the march of every year,
The trumpets, lamps, and waving of the palms,
The azure fringe on robes like milk,
The yellow scrolls wrapped round with silk,
The triumph of the psalms.
I loved to preach the truth,
To thrust and parry in a fair debate,
To trace God’s dayspring in His nation's fate,
To lift up Christ, who dying broke death’s bands;
I love to give men joy for sighs,
To win the thanks of widows’ eyes,
And children’s trustful hands.
‘The truth.’ Yes, I will die.
This chafing Sanhedrin shall not prevail
To check me. They shall see the truth full-sail;
They cannot sink truth, stone me though they can.
Lord, I am ready. By Thy grace
No shade of fear shall cross my face,
And I will play the man.
Fr Lee Kenyon