+ David Gonson (or Guston) was born into a celebrated naval family in Deptford, Kent, England; his father, William, served as a vice-admiral and was connected to the nobility.
+ Received into the Order of Malta in 1533, David served onboard the Order’s ships throughout the Mediterranean until he returned to England in 1540. That same year, as part of the reforms initiated by King Henry VIII, the Order of Malta was suppressed in England.
+ David refused to recognize the king’s supremacy and he was arrested and ultimately condemned for treason and for recognized the pope as the supreme head of the Church. He was hanged, drawn, and quartered at St. Thomas-a-Watering in Southwark on July 12, 1541.
+ Blessed David Gonson was beatified in 1929 as one of the “One Hundred and Seven Martyrs of England and Wales.”
For prayer and reflection
“[Wisdom] preserved him from foes,
and secured him against ambush,
And she gave him the prize for his hard struggle
that he might know that devotion to God is mightier than all else.”—Wisdom 10:12
Almighty and merciful God, who brought your Martyr blessed David to overcome the torments of his passion, grant that we, who celebrate the day of his triumph, may remain invincible under your protection against the snares of the enemy. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal: Common of Martyrs—For One Martyr)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.