The Death of Innocents

Today in the Church Calendar1 we remember the slaughter of the Innocents by Herod (Matt. 2:13-18). There can never be justification or explanation sufficient for the death of the innocent, wherever and whenever, and I will make no efforts to do so. But the prayer that we offer in the Episcopal Church offers a powerful and moving call for God to accept the innocent and thwart the evil.

We remember today, O God, the slaughter of the holy innocents of Bethlehem by King Herod. Receive, we pray, into the arms of your mercy all innocent victims; and by your great might frustrate the designs of evil tyrants and establish your rule of justice, love, and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Additional 17280 f. 203v The Massacre of the Innocents
Description: A framed miniature of the Massacre of the Innocents; two roundels of the slaughter of the children of Ahab and of Saul ordering Doeg to slay the priests.
Origin: Netherlands, S. (Bruges) British Library

  1. It is usually December 28th, this year, due to Christmas being on a Saturday, it has been moved to the 29th. TEC Lectionary []

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