A blog entitled “Canterbury Tales” wouldn’t be worth its salt if it didn’t remind everyone that today is the memorial of Saint Thomas Becket, bishop and martyr.
Born in London ca. 1118, Thomas Becket later became the chancellor to King Henry II. In 1162, Becket became the Archbishop of Canterbury. Thomas went from being a follower of hounds to a shepherd of souls. His apostolic zeal put him at odds with his old friend and patron King Henry II who had issued the Constitutions of Clarendon as a means to tax the Church, make appointments, try the clergy, and undermine papal authority. Becket opposed Henry II and was force to seek refuge in France for six years. When he returned, he was murdered in Canterbury Cathedral by agents of the Henry II.
He stands as an advocate for the rights of the papacy and as a patron against the audacious claim of the English throne.