To bury the dead is one of the corporal works of mercy. Folkestone Cemetery, MMB.
As I said yesterday, I’m not the only one a little ill at ease with the esteem shown to relics, though I see Monsignor Knox’s point about their being a link to the Church Universal in time, space and eternity. (see Monday’s post.)
Interestingly, a friend was talking to my wife and me about ‘mumbo-jumbo with bones’, referring to the ceremonies, mentioned yesterday, that took place with Thomas’s elbow; preferring what he would probably call practical Christianity, and the Church would call the corporal works of mercy. One of these, of course, is to bury the dead.
This friend, just a few months ago, had gone to a great deal of time, trouble and expense to arrange for the ashes of a deceased relative to be brought from overseas and decently interred within the family plot, surrounded by her living relatives; all in a remote part of a county remote indeed from Kent.
Bringing Thomas home to Canterbury, even for a night or two, is very much akin to that.
Saint Thomas of Canterbury: pray for us.
Saint Mildred of Minster Abbey: pray for us.
Saint Eanswythe: pray for us.