O God, among the wonders of Your power You have granted even to the weaker sex the triumph of martyrdom: mercifully grant that we who celebrate the heavenly birthday of Agnes, Your virgin and martyr, may, through her example, advance nearer to You.
Today is the feast of St Agnes. And my family will know why I want to post the prayer above…from my missal…..
Just back from seeing the film Doubt. A very powerful film. You watch this film and you think of situations in life where those who have done wrong have tried to cover their wrongdoings with big words. Supposed words of love and compassion. Manipulation.
Or have made you question yourself, even though you are in the right, by their authority, their hiding behind obedience or name calling, their making you question yourself and your humility. When it is all a cover up for their faults.
Meryl Streep’s character is strong. And, yet, like all of us, she has doubts .
Even though the direction is a little too static, Doubt is a study in how a play can be successfully adapted to the screen (it does not always work). It is also a masterclass in acting. Seymour Hoffman, Streep, Adams and Viola Davis, who plays Donald’s mother, have already picked up nominations for the major acting awards in the USA. On their own, the scenes between Streep and Seymour Hoffman are worth the price of admission. The range of emotions these two can convincingly explore in ten minutes of screen time is mesmerising. From the above, linked review.
Liturgically, there are mistakes in the film. But the human drama is exquisite .
We are reminded of the words of St Augustine ~ Hope has two lovely daughters, anger and courage: anger so that what cannot be, may not be; and courage, so that what must be, will be.
And thus I come full circle, back to St Agnes. Courage. St Agnes had courage. Courage to remain faithful to Christ even though it meant the sacrifice of her youthful life.
What are some customs for the feast of St Agnes? One can bake bread. One can cook lamb – or make a cake in the shape of a lamb. See here.