|Stoning of St. Stephen Paolo Occello, ca. 1435|
It's December 26, the second day of Christmastide. On this day in the western church we celebrate the Feast of St. Stephen, an early church deacon and the first Christian martyr. His death in the name of charity had led this day to be associated with the distribution of food and other essentials to those in need. A thousand years later stories about the life and death of another generous Christian, Wenceslas of Czechoslovakia, would eventually lead to the writing of a mid-19th century Christmas carol that would forever link the two martyrs.
And then there is this bit of humor from the mind of Elvis Costello addressing relief from all the "stress" of the big day with family.
Photos and Illustrations:
commons.wikmedia.org; the painting is located in the Duomo Prato, Italy.