2006 Conference - The English ReformationDeep in History

Martyrs – Paul Thigpen

Paul Thigpen |
January 5, 2017 No Comments

Paul Thigpen, who currently serves as editor of TAN Books, looks at the Christian meaning of martyrdom as explained in scripture and tradition. Taking specific instances of saints from the English Reformation, Thigpen shares how the martyrs serve as powerful examples for today’s Christians.

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Study Questions:

-What makes a person a martyr, according to Dr. Thigpen?

-Dr. Thigpen noted that England was the height of civility and law in the western world and yet many of its citizens were brutally tortured and murdered. Which English martyr’s story impacted you the most?

-What seven lessons can we learn from the martyrs?

-Dr. Thigpen talks about “holy audacity” and “uncomfortable truths” in contrast to the lack of intellectual substance in religion in our current culture. Do you agree with Dr. Thigpen’s conclusions?

-How do these holy men and woman have such a sense of humor in the face of death, according to Dr. Thigpen?

Vocabulary:

English Martyrs: The hundreds who suffered death in England for the Catholic Faith, the unity of the Church,
and the primacy of the Roman Pontiff between the years of 1535-1681.


Paul Thigpen

Paul Thigpen is a native of Savannah, Georgia, and grew up on one of the sea islands along the Georgia coast. He received a B.A. in Religious Studies from Yale University and earned an M.A. and Ph.D. from Emory University. He has served on the theology faculty of several colleges and universities and is currently editor for TAN Books, a publishing company based in Charlotte, North Carolina.