Monday, 5 November 2007

Guy Fawkes-not yet forgotten

When I was a child we remembered the 5th Nov as ‘Guy Fawkes Night’ and we had a fairly good idea of the story behind the bonfires and fireworks. I was quite a bit older when I learned how much of the story had been embellished as anti-Catholic propaganda but that only added a little spice to the celebrations; we Catholic kids could support poor old guy.

Later it was referred to as ‘Bonfire Night’ and although there was the occasional effigy of Guy nothing much of the story was heard.

Now it is simply ‘fireworks night’ and little more than an extension of the noise and ‘party’ of Halloween. It isn’t even pagan. It’s simply meaningless, devoid of it’s historical content and merely a good way to get people to let off fireworks and shout a lot in the streets.

The story of what it is really all about is told by Jamie Bogle HERE.

As it happens my ancestors were involved, probably on the periphery of the plot. A rather famous family in Warwickshire had stayed Catholic despite the persecution and injustices meted out to them. My family were their bailiffs. They too remained Catholic, so I claim linage with one of the few recusant families in England. None of my family were executed over the plot, but they continued to suffer under the policies of the Stuart and then Hanover reigns. They paid the punitive ‘Catholic tax’, having to live like dhimi’s in the now protestant land.

After emancipation in 1829 my family built a new Catholic church to replace the one Henry VIII and his minions stole.

Sadly, they are gone-but the fact that these families held on to the faith throughout gives me hope as the new persecution gets under way.


Susie said...

Thank you for this post...your family and God bless you and God rest the souls of the faithful as were your ancestors.


Marie said...

There is a new persecution under way. It has been gaining ground for we approach Christmas I expect to see the, 'lets not show a Nativity brigade'. In other words remove the Christ from Christmas.

When we do that what are we celebrating? A fat man in a red suit? *sighs*

As for Guy Fawkes night that was cancelled here when I was a child. Too many children were behaving dangerously with the firecrackers.

Peace to you:)


AutumnRose said...

Praise God for your heritage, and those who, despite persecution, remained true to the faith!

darcee said...

What a fantastic heritage!

Marie said...


One of your comments inspired me write a piece for View From the Pews. It's titled 'Christ in the Ruins'.

Peace to you:) & Thankyou.


Tribunus said...

Thansk White Stone Seeker for your comments. May I point out that there is more than one contributor to Roman Christendom and your guessing who is the author is merely that - a guess.

Why bloggers feel the need to guess who the authors are is a curious but observable phenomenon. If we wanted you to know who we are we would have told you!