Wednesday, October 21, 2009

English Saint, Jesuit and Martyr: Robert Southwell

"He had been kept for nearly three years in closer custody than any one ever was, so that no Catholic ever saw him or spoke to him. He was often tortured and that in a more cruel manner than even this barbarity is accustomed to inflict. He publicly declared that he had been tortured ten times, and that with torments worse than the rack or than death itself.

"Thus deprived of all human aid, at length they brought him forth that it might be clear to all how far the divine assistance exceeds all human help.

"For all this long time he could neither say Mass, nor go to the Sacrament of Penance, nor speak with any one, nor receive consolation from any; yet he went to judgment and to execution with so calm and tranquil a mind that you would have said that he came from the midst of a monastery of religious men, and that he was passing of his own free accord from the breasts of his mother to the sweetest of delights.

"He was taken from the Tower of London to Newgate, the prison for thieves and murderers, and there he was kept for three days in what they call Limbo, with no comfort but a candle. On February 20 he was brought into court, where by a cunning device his adversaries took care that very few people should be present; for the day before they gave no notice of what they were going to do, either to the gaoler or to any one else; and at the very time he was summoned a notable thief was led off to execution, which was done that almost all the city might be drawn to see him and thus not notice what was done with the Father."

Link (here)

St. Robert Southwell, S.J., pray for us.

Read, A Foure-Fould Meditation, of the Foure Last Things, by St. Robert Southwell, S.J.

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