St. Thomas à Becket

Dates: 1118 -1170
Feast: Dec. 29
Image Source: © Private Collection / The Bridgeman Art Library

Thomas was a good friend of Henry II, King of England.
Neither was very interested in religion, but both loved England. When the archbishop of Canterbury died, Henry saw an opportunity and made Thomas the next archbishop. Thomas took his position seriously, deepening his prayer life and becoming a faithful priest. He soon found himself in a hard spot. His former friend, the King, wanted him to support laws that would be bad for the Catholics of England. Thomas knew he could not betray his people that way, which frustrated the King. A few days after Christmas, knights in the King’s service stormed into the cathedral and killed Thomas while he was praying.