‘Stephen was filled with grace and power and began to work miracles and great signs among the people.’
-Acts 6:8-10, 7:54-59
St Stephen is venerated as the first Christian martyr. After the joy of the Nativity, this second day of the Octave of Christmas highlights the commitment of Stephen and what it means to bear witness to the Infant Jesus.
The consequences? We must give Him everything, holding nothing back, even if it means persecution and death.
–My Catholic Life, Reflection for St Stephen 2019
Stephen was also a deacon whose responsibility was to care for the poor. So many missionaries around the world show every day that same commitment and compassion which St Stephen showed. We understand the message of today: to give all we have, to God and each other, without holding back.
Prayer for the Feast of St Stephen
We pray for those who, like St Stephen, serve and support poor people nearby and around the world.
May you bless them for their selflessness and generosity.
We ask for the strength and courage to follow their example
to live in compassion and give without counting the cost.
Focus for reflection:
Today our focus is compassion. It takes the deep, all-encompassing reaction of compassion to give without holding back.
Find a quiet place. Perhaps light a candle. Take a moment to reflect on how we can serve with compassion.