29th August – Memorial of St John the Baptist’s Martyrdom.

Today is the commemoration of the death of St John the Baptist – Mk 6:17-28

Herod had sent to have John arrested, and had him chained up in prison because of Herodias, hisSalome_Receiving_the_Head_of_St_John_the_Baptist_-_WGA13771 brother Philip’s wife whom he had married. For John had told Herod, ‘It is against the law’ for you to have your brother’s wife.’ As for Herodias, she was furious with him and wanted to kill him; but she was not able to, because Herod was afraid of John, knowing him to be a good and holy man, and gave him his protection. When he had heard him speak he was greatly perplexed, and yet he liked to listen to him.

When the daughter of Herodias came in and danced, she delighted Herod and his guests; so the king said to the girl, ‘Ask me anything you like and I will give it you.’ And he swore her an oath, ‘I will give you anything you ask, even half my kingdom.’ 

She went out and said to her mother, ‘What shall I ask for?’ She replied, ‘The head of John the Baptist.’ The girl at once rushed back to the king and made her request, ‘I want you to give me John the Baptist’s head, immediately, on a dish.’ 

The king was deeply distressed but, thinking of the oaths he had sworn and of his guests, he was reluctant to break his word to her. At once the king sent one of the bodyguard with orders to bring John’s head. The man went off and beheaded him in the prison; then he brought the head on a dish and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother.

TODAY’S POINTERS ON GOD’S WORD (www.jesuit.org.sg)

  • As you read the passage what words, phases or meanings caught your attention?
  • John the Baptist stood for the Truth with great courage that Jesus was the long awaited Messiah. He was also fearless in pointing out King Herod’s immoral life.
  • When we stand up for God’s Truth, we may have to stand alone and pay a heavy price for our conviction.  Church history is full of true stories of the martyrs and saints who gave their lives for their faith.
  • Let us ask God for the grace to be resolute in our faith especially when the Gospel Truth clashes with our human tendencies and temptations in our daily living.

Jon is resolute that he will share his burdens with Garfield!