In our English class, we are reading a book called ‘Millions’ by Frank Cottrell Boyce. One of the main characters in the book is called Damian and he has an obsession with saints. In the library we have been investigating a saint of our choice. In our case we chose the Holy Innocents.
The Holy Innocents were the baby boys who were killed in place of Jesus. King Herod of Bethlehem ordered all of the baby boys under the age of two years old to be brutally murdered. The King thought Jesus, his number one rival would be among the dead children. Approximately, 14,000 baby boys were slaughtered that night, but Jesus and his mother escaped Bethlehem before any harm could be done.
The Holy Innocents are patron saints of babies and they also console parents of children that have died at birth. They are known as the ‘The Holy Children’ in the eastern church. The church holds a special place for them in their hearts because of their sacrifice for Christ. Relics of the dear children were claimed by French and English churches. The infants who were inhumanely murdered therefore became the first martyrs of Jesus Christ.
King Herod’s torturous ways eventually caught up with him after God punished him for the lives he had taken. Once the evil King Herod of Bethlehem discovered he did not successfully kill baby Jesus he started to show signs that he was losing his mind. King Herod showed some of these signs when he murdered his brother, sister, wife and his three children. God punished him with a horrid condition which he died of by being eaten by worms, whilst still alive. Not such a royal death.
When we started to research the Holy Innocents, we did not know much about their lives but as we began to research them, we realised how important they were in Jesus’ life. They are remembered on the 28th of December for their sacrifice so that Christ lived to help and teach others about Christianity and good will.
Throughout this process we have thoroughly enjoyed our blogging experience. We worked as a team to complete our finished article. It was very interesting and we would happily do it again.
Saints Alive book by Enid Broderick Fisher (Fount paperbacks, 1995)
Oxford Dictionary of Saints by David Hugh Farmer (Oxford University Press, 1987)
Discussion with Mrs Macfadyen, 02/10/14
American Catholic, http://www.americancatholic.org/features/saints/saint.aspx?id=1243, accessed on 29/08/14
Orthodox Church in America, http://oca.org/saints/lives/2014/12/29/103682-14000-infants-the-holy-innocents-slain-by-herod-at-bethlehem accesssed on the 29/08/14
The Holy Innocents- December 28, http://www.traditioninaction.org/SOD/j231sd_HolyInnocents_12-28.html accessed on the 04/09/14