One of the Scripture readings today is in both Matthew and Luke. Part is a prayer which Jesus shares with his disciples at a time in his Galilean ministry when he had paused to reflect upon what was happening in his mission to spread the good news of the kingdom of God. Jesus concludes his thanksgiving by inviting all who are heavy laden to come to him and receive rest for their souls.

Thankfully this is what Jesus gave to the eight Canadian martyrs whom we remember today. I remember in school learning about Jean de Brebeuf and his companions. His dedication to serving Jesus (1633-1649) in the land called New France and his years of faithful service to the Huron Nation is inspiring. He learned the Huron language in order to share the Gospel in words which they could understand. During one of the invasions of Huronia by the fierce Iroquois the mission he was staying at was captured. Brebeuf and his fellow Jesuit missionary, Gabriel Lalemant, suffered greatly before being killed, and eaten as one reference book notes.

These Canadian martyrs placed their heavy load at the foot of the Cross of Jesus and received rest for their souls. Thanks be to God.

Bible Reading: Matthew 11:25-30, Luke 10:21-30, Psalm 116:10-16.