Don’t kill Thomas Becket again. Vote for him today!

My blogging archnemesis has been running Lent Madness over at his blog, Clergy Family Confidential. Setting aside the fact that judging saints is against the rules and that it’s a lightweight activity compared with studying the 39 Articles, I have enjoyed Tim’s efforts. Well, he finally wised up and invited four celebrity bloggers to support the Final Four candidates for the Golden Halo. Naturally, I am one of the celebrity bloggers.

Here’s what I offered in support of Thomas Becket. I hope you will read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest these words. And then I hope you will go vote for Thomas Becket. Tell all your friends to vote (at least once)!

Here are some reasons why you should vote for Thomas Becket:

  • He is an authentic Anglican saint, martyred as he was in Canterbury Cathedral.
  • Though we might today understand Thomas Becket to have been defending clerical immunity from prosecution, he was really defending the church as best he could. He was standing up for the underdogs. He was also working to undermine capital punishment.
  • T. S. Eliot wrote a brilliant play about Thomas Becket, “Murder in the Cathedral.”
  • Thomas Becket is the only saint to have been featured in a surreal comedic sketch on SCTV — a version of Eliot’s play staged by the Mercury III Players and NASA. It’s got to be seen to be believed.
  • Thomas is said to have been humble under his archbishop’s vestments, wearing a hair shirt. That makes him almost as cool as John the Baptist, but with a better diet.
  • Though he could have avoided his fate, Thomas stood strong for the faith and for the church, staring down the king’s assassins.
  • Four days before his death, Thomas preached a magnificent Christmas sermon, in which he said that he did not expect to preach again. He bound up all joy and all sorrow into God’s glory. He was preaching about his own martyrdom and the glory it would bring to God and to the church.
  • The cult of Thomas Becket helped to generate revenue to pay for improvements to Canterbury Cathedral — and still does today. The place is falling apart, so please support Thomas’s quest for the Golden Halo (and maybe help out Canterbury Cathedral a little).

He are some reasons not to vote for Perpetua:

  • She is sometimes known as “The Perp”. Is it a good idea to support someone with such a nickname in today’s era of Safe Church training? I thought not.
  • Perpetua wasn’t even baptized. You might as well vote for Gandhi (a nice guy, but not a Christian).
  • She thought that God’s vision involved dragons. Maybe Perpetua also thought Jesus rode a unicorn into Jerusalem.

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2 Responses

  1. Penny Nash says:

    Um, Not!

    Let’s review.

    In the preceding weeks, Perpetua (who WAS baptized! and recorded it in her diary) defeated Charles Wesley, (writer of nice hymns but perhaps tainted by association with Methodists); William Wilberforce, (an opponent of the slave trade with unattractive health problems), and Vincent (who’s he?).

    Perpetua now stands against Clare (the patron saint of television), C S Lewis (apologetic and author of books claiming Jesus is a lion) and Thomas Becket (played by Richard Burton in a movie seen by everyone except Father TIm).

    One of the earliest Christian martyrs, devout young Perpetua:

    left her own diary behind (written herself! in Latin! in 202, more than 1700 years before CS Lewis begin apologizing in English! in which she tells about her baptism!) before she was killed for the Grand Poobah’s birthday entertainment along with several companions at Roman games in Carthage;

    was a new mother who nursed her child in prison until he was able to survive on his own, during which time she told her dad that he is not the boss of her;

    prayed her brother, who had died at age 7 from a disfiguring disease, into wholeness – our first witness of the power of prayers of the living assisting the dead in their continuing journey to perfection.

    Further, she had visions (way before you did, Clare) showing her brother’s transformation to wholeness as well as a vision of journeying into heaven which was a great, up high meadow or garden to which many thousands streamed and milled around (hmm, this must be where CS Lewis got his idea for that scene in “The Last Battle”);

    showed her impeccable fashion sense by adjusting her clothing and fixing her hair after being rammed by a wild heifer (we don’t look as if we are grieving when we meet death, she explained, a sentiment to which Peacebang will surely agree);

    took matters into her own hands when her novice executioner botched his deathblow by guiding the knife to her throat (Becket rather missed this opportunity, didn’t he?);

    and is now a source of renewable thermoelectric energy for powering our favorite wireless devices by harvesting power from temperature differences. (Can Richard Burton OR Thomas Becket, do that? I think not.) (

    Vote for Perpetua! Amen.

  1. April 23, 2011

    […] Neil Alan Willard. What put Lewis over the edge? Despite Scott Gunn’s reasoned arguments/pleas for Becket, it must have been Neil’s appeal to “Remember Narnia and think of the […]

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