New Sherwood

Feast of Saint Stephen Protomartyr

Saint Stephen’s speech and martyrdom:

“And they made a calf in those days, and offered sacrifices to the idol, and rejoiced in the works of their own hands.  And God turned, and gave them up to serve the host of heaven, as it is written in the books of the prophets: Did you offer victims and sacrifices to me for forty years, in the desert, O house of Israel? And you took unto you the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Rempham, figures which you made to adore them. And I will carry you away beyond Babylon. The tabernacle of the testimony was with our fathers in the desert, as God ordained for them, speaking to Moses, that he should make it according to the form which he had seen. Which also our fathers receiving, brought in with Jesus, into the possession of the Gentiles, whom God drove out before the face of our fathers, unto the days of David.

Who found grace before God, and desired to find a tabernacle for the God of Jacob. But Solomon built him a house. Yet the most High dwelleth not in houses made by hands, as the prophet saith: Heaven is my throne, and the earth my footstool. What house will you build me? saith the Lord; or what is the place of my resting? Hath not my hand made all these things?

You stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do you also. Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? And they have slain them who foretold of the coming of the Just One; of whom you have been now the betrayers and murderers: Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.”

Now hearing these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed with their teeth at him. But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looking up steadfastly to heaven, saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God. And he said: “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.” And they crying out with a loud voice, stopped their ears, and with one accord ran violently upon him. And casting him forth without the city, they stoned him; and the witnesses laid down their garments at the feet of a young man, whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, invoking, and saying: “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” And falling on his knees, he cried with a loud voice, saying: “Lord, lay not this sin to their charge.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep in the Lord. And Saul was consenting to his death.

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December 27, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

4 Comments »

  1. A blessed Feast of Stephen to you, Jeff.

    I hope you won’t think this is trivializing, but I love Mannheim Steamroller’s version of “Good King Wenceslas” (which mentions the Feast of Stephen). Unfortunately, I can’t find it on youtube to share with people. :-)

    Like

    Comment by Lydia | December 27, 2008 | Reply

  2. +JMJ+

    Merry Christmas to the Culbreath family!

    I know I’m a bit late for Christmas Day, Jeff, but I’m still on the Fourth Day of Christmas, so I have the liturgical calendar on my side. ;)

    Like

    Comment by Enbrethiliel | December 28, 2008 | Reply

  3. Thank you, Lydia! It’s good to know the holy protomartyr is still commemorated in this land. We pray for his intercession nightly, as he is the patron of our spiritual home, St. Stephen’s parish in Sacramento. Bishop Wieigand chose the name and I sometimes wonder about its significance for us. I also wonder how many people “get” Good King Wenceslas anymore …

    Enbrethiliel, you’re always right on time as far as I’m concerned, with or without the liturgical calendar! A Merry Christmas to you and yours!

    Like

    Comment by Jeff Culbreath | December 28, 2008 | Reply

  4. Our adopted son, Stephen was named thus because wasn’t he sacrified on the altar of modern convenience?

    We love him and our lucky to have him.

    Happy St Stephen’s day!
    Mary

    Like

    Comment by Mary | January 11, 2009 | Reply


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