Jonathan Daniels vs. Macrina the Younger

Did you ever think you’d utter the phrase “Thank God It’s Lent?” Well, thanks to today’s kick-off of Lent Madness 2013, you’ll probably be hearing people saying “T.G.I.L.” all day. In fact, we wouldn’t be surprised to see a restaurant chain spring up called T.G.I. Lent’s.

In any case, we’re delighted to welcome you to this year’s Saintly Smackdown with a First Round battle between Jonathan Daniels and Macrina the Younger. Yes, it’s a martyred 20th century civil rights advocate versus a 4th century teacher and monastic. Such is the “madness” of Lent Madness.

If you’re new to Lent Madness, welcome! You may want to check out the Voting 101 video if you have any questions. Be sure to sign up for e-mail updates on our home page so you never miss a vote, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and encourage your friends to jump into the fray. While you are on our Facebook page today, please “Check In” to Lent Madness so all your friends will know you have gone to Lent Madness.

We can assure you this will be a wild, joyful, educational, ocassionally gut-wrenching ride. Let the madness begin!

JM Daniels with girlJonathan Myrick Daniels

On Sunday, March 7, 1965, Jonathan Myrick Daniels, a second-year student at the Episcopal Theological School (ETS, now EDS) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, watched as television newscasts showed Alabama State Troopers beating and tear-gassing civil rights marchers as they attempted to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge. The next day, Martin Luther King, Jr. called for white clergy from the North and people of good will to stand with the protesters. Daniels and 10 other ETS students answered the call, flying to Atlanta and arriving late Monday night.

After traveling by bus from Atlanta to Selma, on Tuesday, March 9, Daniels and about 2,500 others participated in the second march to the Pettus Bridge and back. Later that day, three white ministers who had come for the march were beaten, one of them (who had traveled from Boston on the same flight as Daniels) dying two days later.

At the end of the weekend, Daniels and fellow seminarian Judith Upham missed the bus that would take them back to Atlanta and on to seminary. As they watched many of the white protesters leave, Daniels and Upham began to feel it wouldn’t be right to abandon those left in the struggle. Returning to ETS, they petitioned the seminary to let them go back to Selma for the semester.

Daniels and Upham returned to Selma on March 21 and joined the final march to Montgomery. Staying with a local family, they “just hung around, doing what we could to help,” according to Upham, including tutoring children, registering voters, and integrating St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.

After taking his finals in Cambridge, Daniels returned to Alabama for the summer. On August 13, after picketing a whites-only store in Fort Deposit, Daniels and around 30 other protesters were arrested and jailed in Hayneville. Released a week later with no transportation back to Selma, Daniels, 17-year-old Ruby Sales and two others went to Varner’s Cash Store for Coca-Cola where they were confronted by an unpaid special deputy with a shotgun. The deputy threatened the group and took aim at Ruby Sales. Pushing Ruby out of the way, Daniels took the full brunt of the shotgun blast and died instantly. He was 26.

Ruby Sales, who was saved by Daniels’ actions that day, went on to attend EDS and founded the SpiritHouse Project and the Jonathan Daniels and Samuel Younge Institute. Judith Upham became a priest in 1977 and still serves at St. Alban’s, Arlington, TX. The Diocese of Alabama hosts a yearly pilgrimage to Hayneville in honor of Jonathan Myrick Daniels and the Martyrs of Alabama. In addition, Daniels’ alma mater, the Virginia Military Institute, has established a humanitarian award in his honor.

Collect for Jonathan Daniels
O God of justice and compassion, you put down the proud and the mighty from their place, and lift up the poor and afflicted: We give you thanks for your faithful witness Jonathan Myrick Daniels, who, in the midst of injustice and violence, risked and gave his life for another; and we pray that we, following his example, may make no peace with oppression; through Jesus Christ the just one: who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Laura Toepfer

4491378363_2db6696f8bMacrina the Younger

Macrina the Younger (to distinguish her from her granny, Macrina the Elder, in a time before surnames) was the oldest child of a wealthy Christian family in Caesarea, Cappadocia, in the Roman Empire. She was educated in Holy Scriptures, and had a particular interest in the Psalter and the Wisdom of Solomon and focused on ethics in the Bible. When her betrothed died (she was to be married at the ripe old age of 12), she decided to dedicate herself to a journey into Christian wisdom. Her theology, known to us through the writings of her brother Gregory, reminds us that a Christian’s journey is not an inconvenience simply to get to the destination; the journey is the joy itself, filled with the wealth of relationships good and bad, mistakes, successes, and moments that take our breath away and moments that leave us in tears. For Macrina, the journey with Christ is the destination.

Macrina’s journey may not have left us speeches, writings, or sermons, but her life was preached in a breathtaking way through her relationships. Two of her brothers, Gregory and Basil, became two-thirds of the Cappadocian Fathers, men who helped finalize the Nicene Creed and gave words to the great mystery of the Christian faith. Gregory and Basil were bishops, as well as another brother Peter, in part from their sister who refused to let them believe their own hype. She reminded them that Christian faith demanded humility, dedication, and service. She told Gregory his fame had nothing to do with his own merit, and when Basil returned from a successful preaching tour with the big head, we are told she dressed him down considerably (or, as we say in the South, took him out to the veranda for a talking to). She served as an example for Basil and Peter, who followed their sister’s lead and renounced material wealth and focused their education on theology and Holy Scripture. While her brothers may have been early church rock stars, Macrina frequently challenged them on their theology, spiritual practices, and opinions and often, they realized she was right.

She also converted her family’s large, wealthy estate in Pontus to a monastery that cared for the poor and provided a safe, peaceful shelter for study and meditation for women and men alike. Many who lived, studied, and prayed in her monastery were starving women she would find while walking on the roads around the city. Basil and Peter used her life as a monastic to write a Rule for community life; therefore, Macrina became the spiritual mother of monasticism.

Gregory of Nyssa visited his sister as she lay dying and later shared her last words, a mixture of a Greek farewell oration and reflections on Holy Scripture, in his writings. One of the great fathers of Christian theology, Gregory of Nyssa (a saint), and one of the great fathers of Christian spirituality, Basil the Great (a saint, too), called this woman, their sister, the greatest teacher of the faith they ever encountered. Macrina, in her faith, her intelligence, her deep humility, lived a gentle life, and the elements of strength, love, and mercy so mixed in her that the great Fathers of our faith would say to all the world, “This was a woman.”

Collect for Macrina the Younger
Merciful God, you called your servant Macrina to reveal in her life and her teaching the riches of your grace and truth: May we, following her example, seek after your wisdom and live according to her way; through Jesus Christ our Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Laurie Brock

Vote!

Jonathan Daniels vs. Macrina the Younger

  • Jonathan Daniels (62%, 2,820 Votes)
  • Macrina the Younger (38%, 1,738 Votes)

Total Voters: 4,551

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146 Comments to "Jonathan Daniels vs. Macrina the Younger"

  1. Aleathia (Dolores) Nicholson's Gravatar Aleathia (Dolores) Nicholson
    February 14, 2013 - 8:10 am | Permalink

    Yes! Yes! Yes! Jonathan Daniels all the way to victory! As I prepare breakfast after a marathon Ash Wednesday at the Cathedral, I grind my coffee beans joyfully, boil the water, and prepare my morning java to drink from…..what, you say?……my LENT MADNESS 2013 cup graced by the visage of the one and only…..ta-da-ta! (trumpet fanfare) MARY MAGS !!!!On to a meal I obviously need. Holy Moly and Hallelujah! LENT MADNESS IS HERE!!!!!

    • Evelyn Piety's Gravatar Evelyn Piety
      February 14, 2013 - 9:15 am | Permalink

      Amen, sister! Jon Daniels all the way! John 15:13

    • Harlie Youngblood's Gravatar Harlie Youngblood
      February 14, 2013 - 3:46 pm | Permalink

      Aleathia, you can’t say Hallelujah in Lent!
      I’m sure that disqualifies your vote. Oops!
      I just said the H word myself!
      Guess that disqualifies mine too.

  2. Anne Wrider's Gravatar Anne Wrider
    February 14, 2013 - 8:14 am | Permalink

    This was a tough one, but I remember when Jonathan Daniels was martyred and have to give him the vote.

    • Phil Harrington's Gravatar Phil Harrington
      February 14, 2013 - 11:27 am | Permalink

      Why should martyrdom trump everything? Not to take anything away from good Jonathan, but his story is being told big time already. Poor Macrina has been eclipsed by her brothers. She was a martyr to sexism.

      • February 14, 2013 - 12:28 pm | Permalink

        Ahh-men, Phil. It does not take anything away from Daniels to acknowledge the debt which the entire Church owes to Macrina.

        I’m grateful to Laurie Brock for this: Macrina’s theology “reminds us that a Christian’s journey is not an inconvenience simply to get to the destination; the journey is the joy itself, filled with the wealth of relationships good and bad, mistakes, successes, and moments that take our breath away and moments that leave us in tears. For Macrina, the journey with Christ is the destination.”

        • February 14, 2013 - 1:42 pm | Permalink

          Opera singer Bryan? Is that you? It’s opera singer Evelyn out here in MA! Could it be? BTW…Macrina. :-)

        • Craig Clere's Gravatar Craig Clere
          February 14, 2013 - 10:02 pm | Permalink

          Macrina devoted her life to the church. I’m so disappointed that other did not see that.

      • Nancy Evans's Gravatar Nancy Evans
        February 14, 2013 - 7:23 pm | Permalink

        Amen to Phil!! Although I prefer to think of it as a woman who knew she was in charge and was able to ignore the men in her life who wore very large hat sizes!! Macrina you go girl!!!

        • Bruce Anderson's Gravatar Bruce Anderson
          February 14, 2013 - 8:40 pm | Permalink

          Women in history (or herstory) are always the unsung heroes. I hereby sing Macrina’s praises. She also influenced many through her influence on her brothers!

  3. Mary Urban-Keary's Gravatar Mary Urban-Keary
    February 14, 2013 - 8:18 am | Permalink

    The minister who died was, I believe, James Reeb…a UU minister from the Boston area. Surely his sacrifice merits his name being spoken.

    • February 14, 2013 - 9:42 am | Permalink

      Yes, that is correct. I’m glad you mentioned him by name.

      • Craig Clere's Gravatar Craig Clere
        February 14, 2013 - 10:03 pm | Permalink

        As a former UU, yes, we do change, we always recognized him as a martry to the faith.

    • Sarah Lawton's Gravatar Sarah Lawton
      February 14, 2013 - 5:51 pm | Permalink

      My dad was one of the 10 ETS students — Jack Lawton. My mother, who mainly organized the contingent, and other Episcopalians as well, usually ends up being left out, or is referred to as “Jack Lawton and his wife.” The sexism of the day, I suppose. Her name was Nancy Lawton. She worked with the Northern Student Movement in Boston alongside Byron Rushing and many other wonderful folks. She was instrumental particularly in persuading Jonathan to go to Selma; he had doubts about the project that have been much written about. She always felt a little responsible for his going, and what happened.

      When they heard on the news in August 1965 that an unnamed seminarian had been killed in Alabama, they knew. They were on their way to Williamstown, MA for my dad’s curacy, with all their wordly goods packed into their car, and they heard it on the radio somewhere along the Mohawk Trail (Route 2). They dropped their stuff in Williamstown, turned the car around, and headed to Keene, NH for the funeral.

      My parents died in a car crash in July 1991, but the last thing my mom did in her life, as a General Convention deputy from W. Mass, was to work with the Civil Rights veterans from the Episcopal Church in those days, and the dioceses of Alabama and New Hampshire, to put Jonathan’s name on our calendar. That convention in Phoenix was a challenging one, but in my last conversation with my mom, she was full of joy of the recognition he and that struggle were getting. I treasure that.

      So, for my mom and all the many who worked in the Civil Rights Movement, and those who are still working today for racial justice through Christian witness, I voted for Jonathan. Macrina is surely worthy too, but it was a no-brainer for me today.

      Blessed Lent Madness to all,
      Sarah Lawton
      Diocese of California now, child of Western Massachusetts

      • February 14, 2013 - 9:44 pm | Permalink

        Sarah,

        Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful story.

        Laura

        • February 14, 2013 - 10:00 pm | Permalink

          Thank you, Sarah. I’m glad to hear about Nancy Lawton’s contributions to this story.

      • Linnae Himsl Peterson's Gravatar Linnae Himsl Peterson
        February 15, 2013 - 8:23 am | Permalink

        I’m so glad you told your parents story, Sarah.

      • Leeann's Gravatar Leeann
        February 16, 2013 - 10:58 am | Permalink

        Thank you for sharing this story, Sarah. Important to remember the family and friends behind every saint.

  4. Scott Elliott's Gravatar Scott Elliott
    February 14, 2013 - 8:18 am | Permalink

    I am fairly confident that Jonathan Daniels is going to beat Macrina by a wide margin, and prolly make it to the Faithful Four, which is why I’m voting – Macrina!

    • Cathy's Gravatar Cathy
      February 14, 2013 - 8:40 am | Permalink

      Me too!

  5. February 14, 2013 - 8:20 am | Permalink

    How impossible
    did ever two such saints both deserve our votes

    • Nurya Love Parish's Gravatar Nurya Love Parish
      February 14, 2013 - 9:55 am | Permalink

      Yes! This was a very tough round.

      • Nurya Love Parish's Gravatar Nurya Love Parish
        February 14, 2013 - 9:59 am | Permalink

        Whoops! Not intending to represent my diocese here… gravatar mix-up!

    • February 14, 2013 - 12:17 pm | Permalink

      really tough! Want to vote for both on different days. Had to go with Macrina – 1) because folks who haven’t a heart for the Fathers will ensure Daniels gets more votes anyway and 2) the woman who personally helped form the authors of the Nicene Creed w/o getting credit for it deserves everything we can give her and more.

  6. Donna Wessel Walker's Gravatar Donna Wessel Walker
    February 14, 2013 - 8:22 am | Permalink

    I want to vote for both. But with Anne Wrider, I chose the martyr. Tough way to start! Hail Macrina anyway!

  7. Weiwen's Gravatar Weiwen
    February 14, 2013 - 8:24 am | Permalink

    Both deserve a vote, but unfortunately if push comes to shove I would have to vote for Jonathan Daniels.

    That said, I intend for my votes as a whole to reflect a balance between men and women, saints of European descent versus saints from the Global South, saints of color versus White saints, martyrs vs. non-martyrs, etc.

  8. Evelyn Lawyer's Gravatar Evelyn Lawyer
    February 14, 2013 - 8:27 am | Permalink

    Thank you Laurie, for not defining Macrina simply as sister to her more famous brothers. She has so much more going for her and her brothers wouldn’t have become saints without her prodding.

  9. Heath's Gravatar Heath
    February 14, 2013 - 8:27 am | Permalink

    Macrina held her brothers accountable, when they needed to be humbled, and to be reminded they were serving the highest good. The prayers of the monastics have kept this troubled world in balance. Macrina gets my vote.

  10. helen from middletown, oh's Gravatar helen from middletown, oh
    February 14, 2013 - 8:31 am | Permalink

    Both are very deserving, I went the Macrina route, for she has little chance of being the victor today! I am so happy to have Lent Madness back in my life! I can’t wait to vote for Father Damien of Moloka’i. Let the madness begin!!!

  11. Geri Swanson's Gravatar Geri Swanson
    February 14, 2013 - 8:34 am | Permalink

    This was a bit difficult. In my research of deaconesses, Macrina is on the top ten list. But, in my heart, Jontn Daniels won out. As the deacon at St Clement’s in NYC, I shared the sacred chapel space with a stained glass window depicting Jonathan. I was told that Ruby Sales attended its service of dedication.

  12. Virginia in TX's Gravatar Virginia in TX
    February 14, 2013 - 8:41 am | Permalink

    TOUGH, but a woman who influences that deep!

    • Barbara in VA's Gravatar Barbara in VA
      February 14, 2013 - 10:31 am | Permalink

      And a woman from so long ago influencing that deeply….gotta go with Macrina!

    • Molly Reingruber's Gravatar Molly Reingruber
      February 14, 2013 - 10:51 pm | Permalink

      Agreed. Nothing against JoDa, but if “Gregory of Nyssa (a saint), and one of the great fathers of Christian spirituality, Basil the Great (a saint, too), called this woman, their sister, the greatest teacher of the faith they ever encountered” then, that’s good enough for me.

  13. John's Gravatar John
    February 14, 2013 - 8:42 am | Permalink

    Unrelated, I will only attend T.G.I Lent if it serves fish fries all day every day. 24 hour fish fries!

    Related, this was a tough choice. I voted Macrina for the same reason Scott did.

  14. Millie Ericson's Gravatar Millie Ericson
    February 14, 2013 - 8:42 am | Permalink

    Boy, y’all know how to start this off with a bang! A very tough choice! Finally decided to go with Macrina because she is probable the one who really gave the foundation for our credal statements and so deserves all the recognition she can get! Go Macrina!

  15. Marguerite's Gravatar Marguerite
    February 14, 2013 - 8:43 am | Permalink

    Wow! Macrina’s mother must have been one heck of a witness to have turned out a brood like that.

    Hard choice today. Still pondering.

  16. Karen Lea Siegel's Gravatar Karen Lea Siegel
    February 14, 2013 - 8:44 am | Permalink

    Oh, no fair! How do I pick? I’m a lay Associate of a monastic order, and in Macrina I see the foundations of the path that has meant most to my spiritual growth as an adult…but Jonathan Daniels was martyred! The year I was born, even; I remember my mother telling me that her parish priest had gone, in early March, to the protests (while she was just weeks from delivering and really wanted him not quite so far away). Oy! this is hard.

  17. Denise's Gravatar Denise
    February 14, 2013 - 8:50 am | Permalink

    I love the story of Macrina the younger, however, the story of Jonathan Daniels took my breath. He was, as was MLK, martyred for the faith, love and compassion shown during a time of great oppression in modern times.

  18. claire's Gravatar claire
    February 14, 2013 - 8:51 am | Permalink

    Such a toughie! But having been a seminarian at St. Clement’s in NYC, have to go with Jonathan, although Macrina’s leadership/creation of what probably was one of the first double monastic houses, saving starving women and holding her two big fat head brothers to account… wait! Here it is in real time, a vote switch! Macrina you’re a sister after my own heart!

  19. Jessics's Gravatar Jessics
    February 14, 2013 - 8:51 am | Permalink

    Jonathon has an amazing story, almost movie worthy, but Marcina has had a very different type of story..it’s almost not a fair competition…hmmm

    • February 14, 2013 - 11:31 am | Permalink

      Check out “Here I am, send me: the journey of Jonathan Daniels.” It is a documentary, not a true movie, but I believe available for viewing on the web.

  20. February 14, 2013 - 9:05 am | Permalink

    Macrina also had a sense of humor. She wrote these famous words for Basil to say when he entered a basilica followed by the two Gregorys, “Hi, I’m Basil and this my brother Bishop Gregory and this is my other Brother Bishop Gregory.” Sadly to the detriment of Macrina’s legacy, this bit of Cappadocean humor was co-opted by the writers of the Newhart show set in Vermont when it was placed in the mouth of the backwoodsman who said everytime he and his two brothers entered the room, “I’m Larry and this is my brother Darryl and this is my other brother Darryl.”

  21. Bill's Gravatar Bill
    February 14, 2013 - 9:06 am | Permalink

    A tougher choice than I initially thought (kind of like having two high seeds meet in the first round of March Madness). But, being an ETS graduate, and having arrived there while Jon’s memory was still fresh in the minds of many, I have to go with him.

  22. Laurie Atwater's Gravatar Laurie Atwater
    February 14, 2013 - 9:07 am | Permalink

    Welcome the return of Lent Madness — with a very tough choice. As much as I revere Macrina, I had to go with Jonathan, a modern martyr for civil rights.

  23. Suz Cate's Gravatar Suz Cate
    February 14, 2013 - 9:07 am | Permalink

    Good to see you here, Dolores! I’m with Jonathan Daniels all the way, too. Macrina was quite a gal (I especially love her keeping Bas and Greg in line!), Jonathan Daniels is such an inspiration. Just wish the bio included the connection between the Magnificat, Daniels’ call to prophetic action in AL, and the collect…

  24. Lee Ragsdale's Gravatar Lee Ragsdale
    February 14, 2013 - 9:13 am | Permalink

    This is my first Lent Madness, and if this is any indication of the tough choices to be made then I am in for a struggle.

    • peggy's Gravatar peggy
      February 14, 2013 - 9:47 am | Permalink

      Oh, you have not seen tough yet.
      Good luck & enjoy anyway!

    • Molly Reingruber's Gravatar Molly Reingruber
      February 14, 2013 - 10:54 pm | Permalink

      Just remember that your vote in no way impacts their place in the kingdom of God. The last shall be first!

  25. February 14, 2013 - 9:19 am | Permalink

    The story of Jonathan Daniels brings me to tears whenever I read it – I remember his murder because I was in high school and had just become an Episcopalian when it happened. If anything firmly established me as a member of this church, it was his witness. That said … I have to vote for Macrina. Jonathan may be a witness for civil rights in the USA, but Macrina has and will always have a much deeper impact on the church catholic.

  26. February 14, 2013 - 9:21 am | Permalink

    Tough call. I knew and know people who were in Selma during that time and the events are more horrific than we know. It is a good, courageous and noble thing to be drawn to battle injustice because it is wrong, is the right thing to do and is in the news.

    It is quite another to contended with systemic gender dismissal and bigotry day after day, every day of your life, with no realistic hope of changing the status quo, no public platform from which to fight it. And yet, soldier on. Continue to persevere in healing and loving where and as you can and helping God to keep “the boys” slender enough for their Bishop britches.

    Mac-Y for me.

  27. February 14, 2013 - 9:23 am | Permalink

    TOUGH CHOICE!!!! I finally decided to go with Jonathan Daniels, because, social justice is important to me, and he died in pursuit of justice for all.

  28. cherie b's Gravatar cherie b
    February 14, 2013 - 9:24 am | Permalink

    Gotta go with Macrina. For without Macrina, would there have been a Jonathon?

    • Judy Upham's Gravatar Judy Upham
      February 15, 2013 - 6:38 pm | Permalink

      Good point cherie b. Without Macrina would there be any of us?

  29. Jerry Rankin's Gravatar Jerry Rankin
    February 14, 2013 - 9:25 am | Permalink

    I voted for Macrina based on the breadth and depth of her witness and influence on the church.

  30. February 14, 2013 - 9:27 am | Permalink

    This was a difficult one, but Jonathan Daniels is my NH home boy. There are other stories of events that happened in his activism in the South which are important lessons about seeing humanity and Christ, even in those with whom we are locked in a bitter struggle. He learned a lot… and left a teaching legacy in his martyrdom.

  31. Mother Laura's Gravatar Mother Laura
    February 14, 2013 - 9:30 am | Permalink

    Brilliant piece on the fourth Cappadocian, Laurie! She has no chance since she’s up against a modern day martyr, but she’s getting my vote since my specialty as a theologian is women in Christianity.

    Despite my grudge against the committee for dooming Macrina, I have to give them massive props for creating and maintaining the site. My ten year old daughter was seriously bummed that LM didn’t start till today, though getting pulled out of school for Ash Wednesday mass cheered her wait. It’s both great catechesis and a Spirit-filled invitation to claim her Christian identity more openly and engage in respectful evangelism, as she has been spontaneously sharing her joy in LM with school friends from atheist to Jewish! The latter led to especially wonderful interfaith dialogue and sharing, all on the fifth grade playground.

    • Laurie's Gravatar Laurie
      February 14, 2013 - 10:18 am | Permalink

      Thanks! I didn’t think Macrina stood much of a chance, but what a woman! I love the remarks that realize without a Macrina, we might not have so many of the future saints of the church. Girl Power!

    • Donald Patrick Harris's Gravatar Donald Patrick Harris
      February 15, 2013 - 12:42 am | Permalink

      Priceless!

  32. Lisa from TX's Gravatar Lisa from TX
    February 14, 2013 - 9:35 am | Permalink

    The first day and such a tough choice! I had not heard of Daniels’ or his story before and was definitely leaning his direction. Then I read of Macrina and the incredible faith of her family and that her brothers gave her such respect.

    As I debated internally, I didn’t want it to be so difficult to make a decision. Then I realized what a gift we have–two such inspirational people acting out their faith and to know that their stories are still with us speaking into our lives today from the recent past to distant church history.

    PS I went with Macrina, but my heart was torn.

  33. jon rinnander's Gravatar jon rinnander
    February 14, 2013 - 9:42 am | Permalink

    Fred fenton, rector of first parish i attended,had marched at selma, and that was one thing that drew me into Pecusa. That said, choice was hard because i’ve read pelikan’s gifford lectures which helped to showcase Macrina in our day. (a hefty Lenten read)……chose the martyr. At least two friends have been martyred in recent years in Turkey and my heart goes with those who suffer for the faith.

  34. Gwin Hanahan's Gravatar Gwin Hanahan
    February 14, 2013 - 9:43 am | Permalink

    Two inspiring choices. But I’m going with Macrina, a lady who knew something about gently crossing boundaries, using tough love with her brothers (full disclosure: I have four brothers) in whom she saw great gifts for them to use in ways that she as a woman could not. In her humility, her teaching surely influenced the finalizing of the Creed? The Creed! Like a good seminary prof, she nurtured, formed, and taught.

  35. February 14, 2013 - 9:46 am | Permalink

    I voted for Macrina. I stand on her shoulders, and so did Jonathan. Already, only day one, and Lent Madness is hard enough to be penitential.

  36. Ted Garvin's Gravatar Ted Garvin
    February 14, 2013 - 9:51 am | Permalink

    I vote for Macrina the Younger because she has such a cool name.

  37. Sherri Dietrich's Gravatar Sherri Dietrich
    February 14, 2013 - 9:54 am | Permalink

    Cruel choice, but I think it’s time Macrina gets some credit for shaping our theological world. Her brothers have had centuries of renown and I say her time has come now!

    • Kevin Matthews's Gravatar Kevin Matthews
      February 14, 2013 - 10:12 am | Permalink

      Gotta go with Jonathan. Macrina may have shaped classic theology, and I honor that deeply. But we are a different church now thanks to Jonathan’s witness (along with others, to be sure). Instead of being the ‘frozen chosen’, we have spent the half century since his death learning to live the gospel beyond the church walls and elitist cultural trappings.

      Besides, we did not get the chance to see what else he might have done had he lived. Tough call indeed. A millennium or two from now, maybe the choice will be easier.

      • Jonathan's Gravatar Jonathan
        February 14, 2013 - 2:17 pm | Permalink

        I went with Macrina because she spent her life living with God and teaching and exhorting others to do the same. Jonathan’s example is certainly inspiring, like a fireworks display, but few of us are called to that sort of immolation for Christ. For most of us, Macrina’s example of implacable endurance is far closer to the life we are called to live.

        • Tim's Gravatar Tim
          February 14, 2013 - 3:16 pm | Permalink

          I agree. I voted for Macrina for the same reasons, a life-long gift of herself to God and the good of the community.

  38. February 14, 2013 - 9:58 am | Permalink

    What a gift I have received on the first day of Lent Madness: Macrina the Younger! Both stories are stirring and compelling, but I think I have found a new friend and mentor in Macrina. I just returned from Cappadocia and loved the holy beauty of the cave churches and the odd shaped landscapes, yet I had never heard of Macrina. Her brothers are well known but I am looking forward to learning more about Macrina, based on the account here. Thank you to Laurie Brock for the touching historical account. Well done!

    • Laurie's Gravatar Laurie
      February 14, 2013 - 10:19 am | Permalink

      You’re welcome! She was an amazing woman. I wish we had more information on her, but then again, her life spoke enough.

      • February 14, 2013 - 10:28 pm | Permalink

        I now have a framed and matted print of Macrina gracing my desk, so, for me, she won the day!

  39. February 14, 2013 - 9:58 am | Permalink

    Growing up in the South and recalling the story of Jonathan Daniels made the decision for him an easy one.

  40. February 14, 2013 - 10:01 am | Permalink

    I’ve had the privilege of spending some time with Judy U, who went on from this experience to become one of the first women ordained (against the rules) in the Episcopal church. She has taken Jonathan’s legacy and lived a life devoted to justice for all people, and continues to be an inspiration. To hear her talk about the experience of going to Selma with Jonathan, and her life after his death, is so moving. Jonathan deserves our votes!

  41. Ann Ely's Gravatar Ann Ely
    February 14, 2013 - 10:07 am | Permalink

    This was a tough one. I was already to vote for Jonathan Daniels and then read about Macrina the Younger. I suspect Jonathan will win this round without my help and I was truly inspired by Macrina’s story. Go Macrina!

  42. February 14, 2013 - 10:15 am | Permalink

    Great write-ups for two compelling and worthy people. My rationale for voting for JD can be boiled down to three words: No. Greater. Love.

    • Peg S.'s Gravatar Peg S.
      February 14, 2013 - 12:41 pm | Permalink

      Yes, yes, and yes, Heido. That love of all loves that enabled him to push Ruby out of the way and take the blast… For that he wins my vote. Macrina joins the clouds of saintly witnesses I’m happy to have met for the first time through Lent Madness.

    • Relling Westfall's Gravatar Relling Westfall
      February 14, 2013 - 3:41 pm | Permalink

      well said, peg s. I voted the same way and for the same reason.

  43. Cate's Gravatar Cate
    February 14, 2013 - 10:27 am | Permalink

    Echoing what everyone has said – This one is a doozy. Jonathan’s story actually made me cry, so I was sure my vote was for him. But Macrina working diligently in the background… I have three brothers as well, and trying to keep them in line would be no small task! Actually, my vote would probably be with Macrina’s mother (echoing Marguerite’s statement). I too am still pondering. I’ll keep checking back for more comments. Come on! Sway me, people!

  44. Jim's Gravatar Jim
    February 14, 2013 - 10:40 am | Permalink

    The first round of Lent Madness gave us two great choices. I already knew the story of Jonathan Daniels so I spent extra time reading about Macrina. In the end I could not escape the thoughts about one who could have stayed behind in safety and comfort but instead had the faith and courage to step in front of that shotgun.

  45. Patsy's Gravatar Patsy
    February 14, 2013 - 10:49 am | Permalink

    I was all set to vote for Jonathan, but reading about Macrina and her reducing the “big head” of her saintly brother made my decision a lot harder than I thought it would be. I still voted for Jonathan, a martyr of my time, but I send my utmost respect and appreciation to St. Macrina the Younger.

    • Johannas Jordan's Gravatar Johannas Jordan
      February 14, 2013 - 12:25 pm | Permalink

      Patsy said what I am feeling. And others also echoed the difficulty of the choice. A wonderful beginning to “the madness”.

  46. Margaret Smist's Gravatar Margaret Smist
    February 14, 2013 - 10:56 am | Permalink

    I always vote for martyrs!

  47. Cindy's Gravatar Cindy
    February 14, 2013 - 11:10 am | Permalink

    Anyone who takes in destitute women and cares for them has my vote…hail the monastic-Macrina!

  48. February 14, 2013 - 11:13 am | Permalink

    J Daniels all the way to the fab four!!!

  49. Adelaide Kent's Gravatar Adelaide Kent
    February 14, 2013 - 11:17 am | Permalink

    I had to vote for Jonathan Daniels because he walked the walk, and also because ( no offence to Macrina, ) he is a contemporary witness, whose life should be a guide to us all.

  50. Mary Lou's Gravatar Mary Lou
    February 14, 2013 - 11:20 am | Permalink

    What a tough choice to kick off Lenten Madness! If there were ever two that deserved both our votes, it was these two. That said, while I loved the story of Macrina, the younger, and I definitely want to learn more about her, it was hard not to cast my vote for Jon Daniels, especially when his story revives the images of violence of my youth. He, like MLK, was martyred for his faith and his call to social justice for all. God bless them both!

  51. Grace Burson's Gravatar Grace Burson
    February 14, 2013 - 11:33 am | Permalink

    Another New Hampshirite who venerates Macrina but eventually decided to go with the hometown boy.

  52. February 14, 2013 - 11:43 am | Permalink

    Jonathan Daniels went to my school (Virginia Military Institute) and was an English major like me (before my time). He became a strong influnce on my future vocational journey. I studied in “the Daniels Den”, a small library dedicated to his memory in Scott Shipp Hall at VMI, and often wondered about his life and times. Since about the 90s some excellent books and a documentary give one a glimpse into his life and motivations. I am happy to see he is better known these days and can influence future cadets and others through his Christian witness. His closing remarks as Veledictorian inspired me and many others beyond his classmates: “My colleagues and friends, I wish you the joy of a purposeful life. I wish you new worlds and the vision to see them. I wish you the decency and the nobility of which you are capable. These will come, with the maturity which it is now our job to acquire on far-flung fields. The only thing that we can do at this time – is to ‘greet the unseen with a cheer.’” Win the Golden Halo or not, he’s a contender in my book!

  53. Dan's Gravatar Dan
    February 14, 2013 - 12:12 pm | Permalink

    My deceased husband, The Rev. Al Barnaby from the Diocese of RI spoke fondly of working with Jonathan while he was in Providence. We have worked on pilgrimages through South Providence to honor his memory. Both Al and I wrote icons in his honor for the pilgrimage. Jonathan Daniesls – a modern saint indeed.

  54. Robin Crigler's Gravatar Robin Crigler
    February 14, 2013 - 12:19 pm | Permalink

    My goodness…what a tough opening round. I agonised over this one; both are deserving. Macrina seems to have wielded a lot of early (and sorely needed) influence on the church. Plus, it being Valentine’s Day, I have a soft spot for monasticism…

  55. February 14, 2013 - 12:26 pm | Permalink

    Marcina the Younger provides for all the saints the foundations of their faith. Selecting between these two is very difficulty. However, because of the fundamental nature of Marcina’s theology, I voted for her.

  56. Rich in Oregon's Gravatar Rich in Oregon
    February 14, 2013 - 12:28 pm | Permalink

    A very tough one – but Jonathan Daniels takes my vote.

  57. Mike in Maine's Gravatar Mike in Maine
    February 14, 2013 - 12:42 pm | Permalink

    Not even close…Jonathan Daniels!

  58. katherine's Gravatar katherine
    February 14, 2013 - 12:45 pm | Permalink

    She won’t likely win…and I’m compelled to vote for the modern day martyr who stepped into the breach…but a part of me wants to vote for the sister who kept her big-headd brothers from the pitfalls of bloated egos!

  59. Carol Buckalew's Gravatar Carol Buckalew
    February 14, 2013 - 1:05 pm | Permalink

    I am inspired by both saints and their stories. I love Macrina’s patience and persistence; the day by day faithfulness over a lifetime. I voted for Jonathan Daniels, not because he was a martyr but because he kept making decisions to do the right thing even though there was danger. And I voted for him because he is an example of how to live in this day & age. He is a saint that I might meet “in school, or in lanes, or at sea, in church, or in trains, or in shops, or at tea … and I mean to be one too.” Hymn 293

  60. Paul Rosbolt's Gravatar Paul Rosbolt
    February 14, 2013 - 1:08 pm | Permalink

    Great start to LM! Despite a terrific write-up by Laurie B, I had to go with Jonathan. John15:13.

  61. Frances Rudy's Gravatar Frances Rudy
    February 14, 2013 - 1:15 pm | Permalink

    They were both wonderful people, who were showing people Jesus Christ in themselves and through their living. They both shared their lives with people and both cared for people. I found it hard to pick one over the other. To give your life for another at any age is a loud statement that God is Love and Love conquers all.(Read Romans-8:37-39). I finally picked Jonathan.

  62. Cindy Selby's Gravatar Cindy Selby
    February 14, 2013 - 1:16 pm | Permalink

    I personally wanted to vote for Macrina, but the majority of my 6th and 7th grade students voted for Jonathan Daniels, so I entered our vote for Daniels. I guess 11 and 12 year olds can relate more to civil rights than to monasticism.

  63. Bill Kaufman's Gravatar Bill Kaufman
    February 14, 2013 - 1:45 pm | Permalink

    It is a difficult choice. Clearly Jonathan Daniels is relevant to modern America. But Macrina and her brothers have shaped the whole of Christian thought about who we are and who God is. On longevity, I would have to give it to Macrina,

  64. February 14, 2013 - 2:00 pm | Permalink

    I knew Judy Upham, I attended her ordination
    I hear his seminary dean talk about Jonathan
    I marched on the legal march, first day
    I heard all the details from the last person to see Jon except Ruby, he vistied him in jail.

  65. JenniferThomasina's Gravatar JenniferThomasina
    February 14, 2013 - 2:06 pm | Permalink

    Two wonderful saints, two superb write-ups, too hard to decide. I want to vote for both.
    So…I am going to vote for Macrina now. Current results suggest that I’ll have the opportunity to vote for Jonathan later.

  66. Owen's Gravatar Owen
    February 14, 2013 - 2:29 pm | Permalink

    I am teaching Gregory’s Life of Macrina in Greek class this quarter. During a famine in Asia Minor, Macrina rescued female infants who had been abandoned by their families along the main roads and raised them in her own house. Macrina for me!

  67. February 14, 2013 - 2:47 pm | Permalink

    Macrina for me! Such maturity at such a young age. Amazing that her brothers are so well known yet, she, who had such a significant role in their spiritual formation, is a relatively unknown. And, Laurie, (Gregory of Nyssa visited his sister as she lay dying and later shared her last words, a mixture of a Greek farewell oration and reflections on Holy Scripture, in his writings.) you ‘must’ share those last words with us.

  68. Marguerite's Gravatar Marguerite
    February 14, 2013 - 2:50 pm | Permalink

    Such different lives. Such exquisite examples of Christian love and fortitude. Voting for Macrina. Contemplatives never do well in this competition and I understand that. So I’m making just a small gesture to this life.

    Love how many votes there are already! Great work, everybody.

  69. Elizabeth's Gravatar Elizabeth
    February 14, 2013 - 2:51 pm | Permalink

    Too, too tough, and I had to just close my eyes and click on a choice here. But on to something easier: I vote that Souplantation, a big chain ‘eatery’ here in the West, with its mostly healthy, but uncompelling, cuisine, and its half-hearted attempt at “dessert,” be renamed TGI Lent.

  70. Cricket Cooper's Gravatar Cricket Cooper
    February 14, 2013 - 3:14 pm | Permalink

    Thank G-d I am a Diocese of NH priest, which swayed my vote to Jon. Otherwise, this would have been a toughie.

    Truly, this is a win/win round.

  71. Tim R's Gravatar Tim R
    February 14, 2013 - 3:28 pm | Permalink

    Sorry although martyrdom is an admirable trait, I had to go with Macrina for the very fact women were second class citizens at best, but she persevered and was a guiding hand to my religion. Without her Jon may never had the chance to martyr himself.

  72. Constance Santana's Gravatar Constance Santana
    February 14, 2013 - 3:46 pm | Permalink

    I lived in Alabama during these terrible days. To a child from New York it was a very confusing and terrible time. My mother was the head librarian in Jackson, Mississippi when they brought the dogs in. The staff had locked her in a closet because her position was that there was no reason any citizen should be denied access to the library. Clearly I have to give my vote for Jonathan! Thank God for him and all those who suffered and even died to wake up our country in those terrible days.

  73. Diane Cook's Gravatar Diane Cook
    February 14, 2013 - 3:48 pm | Permalink

    I was ready to vote for my man Jon, but was moved by Macrina’s contribution to the whole of Christendom. Macrina good luck to you. This was a toughie!!

  74. February 14, 2013 - 4:30 pm | Permalink

    Gotta put in a plug for the monastic and teacher, Macrina. Great, thought-provoking start to Lent Madness!

  75. Judy Austin's Gravatar Judy Austin
    February 14, 2013 - 4:34 pm | Permalink

    I had to vote for Jonathan Daniels in honor and memory of all those who fought that particular good fight. But it’s good to learn about Macrina–what a model for those of us who’ve been in a situation where we’ve been unfairly sidelines!

  76. Amelia Hagen's Gravatar Amelia Hagen
    February 14, 2013 - 4:40 pm | Permalink

    There are going to be lots of hard choices. As much as I admire Macrina, though, I have to go with Jonathan.

  77. Harry W's Gravatar Harry W
    February 14, 2013 - 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Jonathan Daniels brings us a view of a modern saint who heard the call of
    God in his life and found a way to answer it. May more of us listen this lent
    to hear God’s call for our heart, our soul and our body to bring God’s vision
    to the whole world.

  78. Lois Phillips's Gravatar Lois Phillips
    February 14, 2013 - 5:05 pm | Permalink

    Voting for Jonathan, because he is not only a modern saint, but an Episcopal saint.

  79. KAS's Gravatar KAS
    February 14, 2013 - 5:13 pm | Permalink

    Having been a college student at the University of Alabama during the civil rights movement, I know first hand the courage and commitment that it took for Jonathan Daniels to make such a stand. I have been anxiously awaiting the day to cast my vote for him!

  80. JAG's Gravatar JAG
    February 14, 2013 - 6:01 pm | Permalink

    I was with Jonathan Daniels all the way; then I read about Macrina. Both did great things; but I had to remember the time she was living in and what she taught us. I think we are still learning from her actions.

  81. Ginny Rodriguez's Gravatar Ginny Rodriguez
    February 14, 2013 - 6:17 pm | Permalink

    Macrina kept her brothers focused on the message, rather than the self. She used her wealth to house the destitute, the ill, and the abandoned. She influenced the direction of the early church—east & west. She gets my vote.
    But, I cried remembering Jonathan Daniels.

  82. William Loring's Gravatar William Loring
    February 14, 2013 - 6:25 pm | Permalink

    Really not nice of you to put Jim and Macrina up against each other in the very first round; both should have had a better chance to go farther; but then people who promote papist purple instead of proper Anglican Lenten Array will probably do anything!
    And, BTW, Valentine may or may not belong in the Calendar or in Lent Madness, but my wife and I have seen his relics in Rome (oddly enough in the Greek Rite Church there), we we KNOW that he was real.

  83. February 14, 2013 - 6:31 pm | Permalink

    My first time with Lentmadness. I am so impressed with your choice of candidates and also the thoughtfull reasons for most of those who responded..I tend to agree with many of these folk. My choice is for Macrina a wise young woman, whose faith matured and in her humility she became so great an influence on her brothers, the bishops. A Saint by all measures. I am glad to learn about her life and devotion to Christ our Lord.

  84. Barbara Lewis's Gravatar Barbara Lewis
    February 14, 2013 - 7:19 pm | Permalink

    Well, it looks as if this year’s LM will be exciting indeed. I only remember hearing about Macrina very briefly in the past. She was impressive. But my vote must go to Jonathan Daniels.

  85. February 14, 2013 - 7:41 pm | Permalink

    The whole Waker-Keenan clan casts our vote for Jonathan Daniels.

  86. Natalie's Gravatar Natalie
    February 14, 2013 - 7:50 pm | Permalink

    I am not an American, and I am horrified that Jonathon’s life is such recent history. Yes, he was a good man, doing what saints usually do – the ordinary in a Godly way.

    BUT

    Macrina made me cry. She is SO inspirational. Seems unfair that she is losing votes for not being “local” or recent.

    Go Macrina!

  87. Livy's Gravatar Livy
    February 14, 2013 - 7:54 pm | Permalink

    OMStars…how can you do this??? To have to choose between Jonathan who was martyred here in Alabama and a woman (of whom I had never heard!) whose life and ministry is such a witness to faith and feminine spirituality!!!
    I’m afraid Home town advantage wins the day……

  88. Nancy Baillie Strong's Gravatar Nancy Baillie Strong
    February 14, 2013 - 8:00 pm | Permalink

    Voting for Macrina (whose story I love, whose witness and theological acumen I value highly), though heart-torn as I am usually in awe of the martyrs…I think I’ll have another chance to vite for Jonathan. What a way to begin Lent Madness!

  89. Lynda's Gravatar Lynda
    February 14, 2013 - 9:08 pm | Permalink

    My unanimous vote went to Macrina who plainly helped her brothers with plain speaking and an exemplary life. Oh and she is a WOMAN with such faith and belief. What a great start to this Lent Madness.

  90. Beverly's Gravatar Beverly
    February 14, 2013 - 9:18 pm | Permalink

    Wow! Thanks for the reflective start to Lent Madness.

  91. Dorine Houston's Gravatar Dorine Houston
    February 14, 2013 - 9:24 pm | Permalink

    Macrina the Younger, for the sheer years she put into her journey of faith, for the way she made Sts. Gregory and Basil better men, for all she gave over the long haul in the name of justice. She may well be a real force behind our Nicene Creed and our regular eucharistic recitation of the mystery of faith. I am truly surprised and disappointed by how heavy the difference in the votes is.

  92. Lorna Russell's Gravatar Lorna Russell
    February 14, 2013 - 9:27 pm | Permalink

    As someone who knew Jon Daniels personally, I find this Saintly Smackdown disturbing, maybe even in bad taste? My husband, now an Episcopal priest, was close friends with Jon at Keene High and was a pall bearer at his funeral. Jon’s story is an important one, and perhaps this is a way to get it told. But as some kind of Lenten game??? Maybe I just don’t get it…

    • February 14, 2013 - 10:03 pm | Permalink

      Dear Lorna,

      I assure you (and I believe I speak for the other bloggers here) that I take the responsibility for telling this story very seriously — especially knowing that there are people in this audience who knew Jonathan Daniels personally.

      You are quite right that the goal here is not the game, but to share the stories of these saints, some well-known, others more obscure, in hopes that we may be inspired to live our lives in service to God and others. The game part is only a vehicle for making that happen.

      I hope that helps.

      Laura Toepfer

  93. Patsy's Gravatar Patsy
    February 14, 2013 - 9:28 pm | Permalink

    Wow, over 4000 voters. What was the number of votes for last year’s first round?

  94. John Saville's Gravatar John Saville
    February 14, 2013 - 10:06 pm | Permalink

    My father would be thrilled with Lent Madness. He loved the saints, those, he often said, “whose shoulders we stand on”. In 2004, a few years before he died, he published “Saints in Sonnets”. It includes this sonnet for Jonathan Daniels:

    A “ministry of presence” was his goal
    For civil rights and social justice’ soul.
    That long hot summer witnessed for Christ’s love
    King’s caring Selma march strength from above.
    When jailed for joining student picket line
    Refused his bail; not leave his friends behind.
    Released, was shot on steps of grocery store;
    Pushed girls in front to ground; no one gives more.
    King said, “No incidents more beautiful
    In the annals of Church History.
    The meaning of his life was so fulfilled,
    Our grief gives way. Praise true nobility.”
    ‘Twas Mary’s Son moved him to save the weak.
    “He hath exalted humble and the meek”.

    Canon Kim Saville

  95. February 14, 2013 - 10:25 pm | Permalink

    I learned about Macrina last semester in my early church history class, and was surprised I had never heard of her before, given that I’d known about her famous brothers. I was inspired by her story, and also intrigued that she had a special devotion to Thecla, another woman leader in the early church. So she definitely had my vote.

    I was touched by Jonathan’s story, though, and was glad to learn of it. What I found more moving than his death was the point in the story that resulted in his being in that situation in the first place: “it wouldn’t be right to abandon those left in the struggle.” This makes me think he would be a very good patron saint of the elements in the Emergent Church movements that understand social justice work in terms of living among the poor and oppressed.

    Those who want to know more about Macrina might like to read her Life written by her brother Gregory of Nyssa, here: http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/gregory_macrina_1_life.htm

  96. February 14, 2013 - 10:35 pm | Permalink

    Oh dear – I’m a former EDS faculty member and an early Christianity specialist; two of my favourites. Is this going to be the hardest vote, in the first round?

  97. Molly Reingruber's Gravatar Molly Reingruber
    February 14, 2013 - 10:57 pm | Permalink

    Aaaaay Macarena…oops, I mean Macrina, Macrina!

    • Kathlene's Gravatar Kathlene
      February 15, 2013 - 1:51 am | Permalink

      I am discovering more and more about the joy of the Journey. The picture of God welcoming us at the end of our life and asking, “So did you enjoy the world I designed for your pleasure?” SO often we make the journey arduous, a task, and miss the joy that is IN the journey, seeing only a hoped for destination. How different life could be if we would live fully now, not just in anticipation of glory after!

  98. ADRIANA calzada's Gravatar ADRIANA calzada
    February 14, 2013 - 11:23 pm | Permalink

    Definitely Macrina!
    We need more faith-based inspirations like her nowadays… Women who dare confronting men…

  99. Dottie Lou's Gravatar Dottie Lou
    February 14, 2013 - 11:38 pm | Permalink

    New to Lent Madness — excellent!! Gotta go with the martyr.

  100. Donald Patrick Harris's Gravatar Donald Patrick Harris
    February 15, 2013 - 12:32 am | Permalink

    This was a very tough round. Both are especially deserving of mention and emulation. Thanks to our guest bloggers for their insightful summaries and observations.
    As a child of the civil rights movement I could vote for Jonathan. His story is inspiring, “contemporary” example of Christian faith and witness. He is a “saint” of our generation, worthy of veneration.
    As a monastic who hasn’t left his day job I could vote for Macrina a true servant who guided the spiritual formation of two Cappadocean Fathers and may have influenced the content and style of one of history’s most important theological documents.
    A vote for Marcrina because she was a woman or because her opponent was a white man would be nothing more than a cheapened excuse for sexism/feminism. And a vote for Jonathan because of his civil rights activism would denigrate his passion for God, compassion toward others, and mission to the world.
    This one is a really tough call: “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends,” or “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.” One who paid a price for their faith every day of their lives or one who paid the ultimate price? I’m sweating bullets here . . . how unfair to make this a first round battle, AARGHH!
    Jonathan Daniels it is.

  101. Rev. Connie Jones's Gravatar Rev. Connie Jones
    February 15, 2013 - 4:39 am | Permalink

    Not an easy choice–older and younger generations bring different viewpoints, which may affect how a person might vote on this challenge.

  102. Noel's Gravatar Noel
    February 15, 2013 - 6:44 am | Permalink

    Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends……..
    so I had to go with Jonathan Daniels.

  103. Robin Dake's Gravatar Robin Dake
    February 15, 2013 - 8:22 am | Permalink

    In honor of my spiritual mentor who knew Jonathon Daniels, that’s where I cast my vote. Onward with Lent Madness!

  104. Anne Kennedy's Gravatar Anne Kennedy
    February 15, 2013 - 9:48 am | Permalink

    I chose Jonathan Daniels because he was of our time, a time in which we are still so desperate for unity and peace and love.

  105. Kathy Tolf's Gravatar Kathy Tolf
    February 15, 2013 - 1:51 pm | Permalink

    JD won my vote because I didn’t think of martyrs as modern-day occurrences in first-world nations; this opened my mind to the notion that a modern saint in the modern world need not *only* be like Mother Teresa, devoting themselves to the poor in the third-world/developing world. His story made a huge impact on me. And, I’m thinking…that’s the point.

  106. Mary Beth's Gravatar Mary Beth
    February 15, 2013 - 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Had to go with Jonathan. My father was in AL in the bad old days. Some things just aren’t discussed.

  107. Stan's Gravatar Stan
    February 15, 2013 - 7:52 pm | Permalink

    I go with Jonathan. Have made pilgrimage to where he was shot. Brave guy, lay down his life for another and a principle.

  108. Donna DeCaul's Gravatar Donna DeCaul
    February 18, 2013 - 10:25 am | Permalink

    …difficult choice but I had to go with Jonathan…

Comments are closed.

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