Item description for Blood of the Martyrs, Seed of the Church: Stories of Catholics Who Died for Their Faith by Paul Thigpen...
Overview Blood of the Martyrs, Seed of the Church tells the stories of representative martyrs throughout the history of the Church, beginning with Christ's own passion as the model of Christian martyrdom. Martyrs whose stories are told include man and women; young and old; clergy, lay and religious. They are ancient, medieval and modern believers from every continent and a myriad of cultures. As the stories unfold, the author explains relevant details, including the nature of martyrdom, how martyrdom helped to build and shape the church, and how the church authenticates martyrs.
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Paul Thigpen, who earned his PhD in historical theology at Emory University in Atlanta, is the editor of the national bimonthly magazine the Catholic Answer and the founder and executive director of the Stella Maris Center for Faith and Culture in Savannah, Georgia. A best-selling author, award-winning journalist, and scholar of Church history, he has published thirty books on spiritual topics.Kevin Perrotta is an award-winning Catholic journalist and a former editor of God s Word Today. In addition to the Six Weeks with the Bible series, he is the author of Invitation to Scripture and Your One-Stop Guide to the Bible. Perrotta lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan."
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HOLY CATHOLIC HEROES AND MARTYRS KILLED BY US PARAMILITARY FORCES IN THIS HEMISPHERE IN OUR GENERATION Nov 11, 2006
We can take no comfort in the murder of our martyrs wherever nor however they die, yet their blood is the seed of Faith and Vocations. An earlier reviewer has not read this book but only quotes from other sources and then wings it, obviously not even reviewing the Table of Contents or Index. This current book avoids the political inconvenience of pointing out just how many of our martyrs are killed by US paramilitary action. For further study please search their names individually and collectively here on the mighty this site, as I have and continue to do.
Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero, ora pro nobis Father Rutilio Grande, ora pro nobis Father Ellacuria and Companions, orate pro nobis Jean Donovan, ora pro nobis Sister Maura Clarke, ora pro nobis Sister Ita Ford, ora pro nobis Sister Dorothy Kazel, ora pro nobis Father Bill Woods, ora pro nobis Father Stanley "Guadalupe" Rother, ora pro nobis All holy martyrs who die for our Faith in the Americas, orate pro nobis.
After further research and recollection within my small spiritual library/chapel, I shall amplify this list. I do not wish to spell anyone's name wrong and thus risk misdirecting your search.
There is no comfort in the death of any martyr anywhere and even less when we grow blind and deaf and forgetful of their ultimate sacrifice in Christ.
I request a similar list of our martyrs in the lands travelled in safety by Saint Francis of Assissi as emissary of Peace. I find one:
mon bien-aime' frere Charles deFoucauld, priez pour nous et la paix que vous vouliez donner au monde.
Another excellent resource in this vein in Carrigan's Salvador Witness: The Life And Calling of Jean Donovan. Carrigan first wrote this in 1984 while doing the prize winning documentary (no longer available) called Roses in December, and it was recently revised and available in both editions on this site. Also please see Maryknoll Sister Ita Ford's "Here I am Lord" regarding her vocation and ultimate martyrdom with Jean by US paramilitary forces in San Salvador after their rape and torture and burial in a shallow roadside grave.
Outside the 'nice' box Nov 11, 2006
"No one is a martyr for an opinion;it is faith that makes martyrs."
These are the words of Venerable Cardinal John Henry Newman, and the truth expressed by them drives Thigpen's fascinating book.
The concept of martyrdom is given short shrift in many American parishes these days. When it is raised at all, it's often accompanied by a condescending sneer -- "Thank God such unenlightened times are behind us." All too often accounts of the "supreme witness" the martyrs gave for the faith are scandalously replaced by what Thigpen calls "the Gospel of Nice."
Writes Thigpen, "The Martyrs simply don't fit into the 'nice' box. They bleed all over it. People with their eyes gouged out and their fingernails torn off aren't 'nice.' In fact, their heroic sufferings and witness rip the mask of pretense right off the Gospel of Nice."
Readers will learn first of "the model of martyrdom," Christ, for his is the example all subsequent martyrs seek to follow. Thigpen then gives poignant accounts of early martyrs like St. Stephen, St. James, and St. Polycarp. He groups others according to categories like "Martyrs Executed by the State" and "Martyrs of the Mission Fields," and gives due attention to the martyrs of the twentieth century like Blessed Miguel Pro and St. Teresa Benedicta (Edith Stein.)
And, contrary to the modern "sneer," martyrdom is by no means a thing of the recent or distant past. Thigpen writes, "[t]he current annual account of Christian martyrs' deaths may well be more than 290,000."
Some Christians may look at that statistic and take comfort from the fact that most of the killing is taking place in China, the Sudan, and Muslim countries. But that comfort may prove illusory. As the West continues to slough off its Christian heritage, and countries like Canada criminalize orthodox Christian doctrine through so-called "hate crimes" legislation, "supreme witness" may once again be given closer to home.
VERY Inspirational! Nov 3, 2003
This book is a total GOD send. When I first bought this book, I was going through a period of total despair due to a sin that I had to give up when I converted to the Catholic faith.
But when I read this book, and I saw what these men and women went through because of their love for Jesus, it totally filled my soul with hope.
I thought to myself "If THEY could die such terrible deaths for love of Christ, then surely I could LIVE without this particular sin, for love of Christ!
After reading it, it was like a weight was lifted from my chest and I found a happiness that I never thought I could ever come to again.
I HIGHLY recommend this book, God bless.
Seeds Review Jun 29, 2001
This is a compelling "must read" for anyone accepting the challenges of being called "Christian".
Blood of the Martyrs Review Jun 6, 2001
This is an excelent book that tells the history of the Catholic martyr and how their examples led others to follow in their footsteps, creating many conversions and great growth in the church. I recomend this book to anyone who wants to grow in their faith and love for christ.