St. Thomas More experienced many of the daily life struggles, successes, failures, joys and pains of the students and families at St. Thomas More Academy. God was an integral part of decision-making in St. Thomas More’s life, making St. Thomas More a perfect role model for our students and families. He was an example of amiability and fair-mindedness, and his home was filled with virtue and joy.
St. Thomas More was born in London in 1478.
The son of a lawyer and judge, Thomas learned Latin as a child and at the age of 13, was sent to live in the household of John Cardinal Morton, Archbishop of Canterbury and Lord Chancellor of England. While studying at Oxford, he developed a love for Greek literature, studied French and mathematics, and played the lute and the violin. Thomas eventually became a law student and lecturer on law. He loved to write Latin and English poetry.
He prayed about his vocation and discerned that God was calling him to married life. He did marry and had 4 children. Thomas More was elected to parliament and had a successful political career. In 1525, Thomas More held the high position of Chancellor of England. Sir Thomas opposed King Henry VIII’s divorce from Queen Catherine and declaration as Supreme Head of the Church in England. Sir Thomas resigned from his position as chancellor in 1532.
Sir Thomas More feared not death, but sin, which can cause a much more permanent and painful death. In the end, he followed the example of Christ and many other saints, laying down his life. Imprisoned in the Tower of London in April 1534, he was convicted of high treason in early July 1535 and was martyred by beheading on July 6, 1535. Before the chopping block St. Thomas More declared that he died “the King’s good servant, but God’s first.”
In the Roman Catholic Saint’s calendar, St. Thomas More and St. John Fisher are commemorated together on June 22, the date of the latter saint’s death. St. Thomas More, pray for us.