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Saturday, August 30, 2014

+ Saint MARGARET WARD, 1588


WILLIAM WATSON, a secular priest, being apprehended, through force of torment went to the Protestant Church once. Struck with remorse in the midst of the Protestant congregation, he repaired the scandal he had there given by recanting his conformity, and declaring that theirs was not the service of God, but was in truth the service of the devil. For this he was again imprisoned, and was continually plied with threats and promises to urge him to go again to church. The Catholics feared for his constancy, but dared not, for their own safety, approach him, till a gentlewoman, Margaret Ward, determined to make the attempt. Disguised and carrying a basket of provisions, she for a month visited the prison, being always closely searched. At length she managed to convey him a cord, and with this he effected his. escape ; but in his haste and danger he left the cord hanging from the window of his prison. Margaret, being his only visitor, was therefore apprehended, hung up by the hands, and cruelly scourged. On her trial she admitted her part in the prisoner's escape, and rejoiced " in having delivered an innocent lamb from the hands of bloody wolves." Offered her pardon if she would go to church, she refused, and was executed, showing to the end great constancy, August 30, Tyburn,

" I was in prison, and you visited me."— MATT. XXV. 36.

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