Welcome, Halo Hopers, and welcome to Tuesday’s Matchup, after we say a brief prayer for poor Edmund the Martyr King, who will henceforth remember as Totally Dead and Buried St. Edmund, as he was utterly trounced by Bertha’s fans.  The Queen of Kent, or Big Bertha as I hear they’re calling her, goes on to face either Chief Seattle or John Donne.  

 

When I was once visiting a long term care home, I met a lady who had been a professional musician, piano and organ, and I asked her who she loved to play the most.   “Bach, Bach, Bach, Bach”, she said, as a radiant smile spread across her face.   I am sure angels in heaven never looked so beatific.

 

So, with all that good feeling for Bach, let me just put in a brief word for Richard Hooker and Team Anglican.   It so happens that on this date in 1556, Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, was burned at the stake by the authorities of Mary Tudor, during her brief attempt to return England to Roman Catholicism.   

 

Fast forward thirty years after the death of the founder of Anglicanism, and as we read today on lentmadness.org, a bedraggled Richard Hooker arrives in London as the rector of Temple Church.  There, in a church that was a hotbed of Protestant and Puritan enthusiasm, Hooker preaches that the souls of those who died under Roman Catholicism before the Reformation are saved by the grace of God.

 

Seems an odd thing to think about now, but in an England where memories of “Bloody Mary” and poor martyred Cranmer were still fresh and where Protestant Elizabeth Tudor had enemies all over the place, it was a gutsy and gracious thing for a mild and scholarly man like Hooker to preach.  It’s one of the reasons why I love this unassuming hero of Anglicanism.

 

So, I am sure that Bach will crush Hooker, but today I’m flying the flag for my man Richard.   Vote as your conscience and musical tastes dictate.  Vote here:  https://www.lentmadness.org/2023/03/johann-sebastian-bach-v-richard-hooker/

 

 

Blessed be their memories,

 

Michael