On his way to be martyred at Rome, St Ignatius wrote to the Christians at Rome, begging them not to prevent his death: ‘I am the wheat of God, and let me be ground by the teeth of the wild beasts, that I may be found the pure bread of Christ’. And again: ‘Him I seek, who died for us: Him I desire, who rose again for our sake’. And again: ‘My love has been crucified, and there is no fire in me desiring to be fed; but there is within me a water that lives and speaks, saying to me inwardly, Come to the Father’.

May the great love of this martyr for Christ inspire and surround us in our own following of Him, and may God bless you this day.