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Forty-eight years ago I was a Deacon studying at Lincoln Theological College, a short distance from the magnificent Lincoln Cathedral, in Lincoln, England. On November 17 the students processed from the College to the Cathedral where they raised a great shout that echoed through the huge stone cathedral in celebration of Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln, 1140-1200.

Hugh is remembered for his stand against injustice of any kind. He boldly supported the peasants in defiance of the king’s harsh forest laws. On a number of occasions he was called upon by the Pope and by the King to be the Judge in important cases. He tended the lepers and several times, all alone, defended the oppressed from rioting mobs. Following an earthquake he rallied the people to repair the damaged cathedral and worked on it with his own hands. He was a sportsman, a lover of children and animals, and an excellent administrator who travelled throughout the Diocese of Lincoln, the largest diocese in England at the time.

Today we give thanks for Hugh, a true shepherd and defender of the sheep.

Bible Reading: Matthew 24:42-47