Friday, 26 July 2013

Titus Brandsma and Thoughts on Time

In the Carmelite Church on Whitefriars in Dublin, the sacristan has moved the statue of Blessed Titus Brandsma from its place in a small shrine, to the front of the church, in honour of his feast day tomorrow. Already, dozens of candles have been lit for intercessions.

In the small shrine, at the back on the left-hand aisle, are now placed a few letters from Blessed Titus to various people, concerning his stay in Ireland in the 1930s. I read the translations, and was reminded of the letter in the Church of the Circumcision in Valletta, from St. Ignatius of Loyola.

I find it moving to see the handwriting and read the words of saints. These men were doing what God asked them to do on earth. Now, their letters are second class relics.

And, I was reminded at how fast the world changed from the writing of these letters of Bl. Titus to the day he was murdered. Freedom of speech was taken for granted when he wrote his letters in the mid 1930s. How quickly things changed for him. He was actually killed today, July 26th, in 1942, less than eight years from the dates when he was writing freely in Ireland, just before his trip to the States in 1935.

How fast things can change, dear brothers and sisters in Christ. Bl. Titus was arrested on January 19 and died on July 26th. Not much time to prepare for martyrdom...

We have more time to think of freedom of the press, freedom of speech for Catholics; perhaps a year and half will pass before we are fined for writing on certain subjects. I am extrapolating from recently passed laws.

Blessed Titus is a great saint for modern times. May he bless all of us who pray and write for the glory of God and His Kingdom.

Bl. Titus' Press Pass from

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