It's Guy Fawkes day, when heretics all over England celebrate one of the major events in the destruction of Catholic, humane, idyllic Britain and the beginning of the protestant nightmare that has brought that "garden, that demi-paradise" to the point of, well, Charles and Camilla, Tony Blair, the Spice Girls, Rowan Williams and company.
I wondered in a post on October 14, a couple of weeks ago how Catholics should mark the day, or respond to those who celebrate it (an abstract question here in the US, but more practical in the UK, where people still light bonfires, set off fireworks, and don Guy Fawkes masks every Nov 5). I actually had a response to that post a few days ago, from Robert, who sent me the following link:
The image above is of the small engraving I purchased a few weeks ago, depicting the interrogation of Guy Fawkes before James I. Unless you're some Commonweal-reading, kumbaya-singing pacifist, you gotta admire Guy for trying the Gunpowder Plot, even though he ended up being duped.
Since this is such a banner day for the English "reformation," I suppose this is a good day to plug a great work of counter-propaganda by a nineteenth-century protestant, William Cobbett's History of the Protestant Reformation in England and Ireland. (actually, I hear that Mr. Cobbett crossed the Tiber at some point after finishing this book). TAN, a publisher worthy of support, has the book on sale $16 right now. It's $21 on Amazon, and it's always better to purchase books from small publishers like TAN directly, because the margins are better for them, and consequently, they have more resources to keep valuable books like these in print.