St. Canute was a strong, wise king of Denmark. He lived in the eleventh century. Canute was a great athlete, an expert horseman, and a marvelous general.
At the beginning of his reign, he led a war against the barbarians who were threatening to take over the civilized world. King Canute and his army defeated them. He loved the Christian faith so much that he introduced it to people who had never heard of Christianity.
St. Canute knelt in church at the foot of the altar and offered his crown to the King of kings, Jesus. King Canute was very charitable and gentle with his people. He tried to help them with their problems. Most of all, he wanted to help them be true followers of Jesus.
However, a rebellion broke out in his kingdom because of the laws he had made about supporting the Church. One day some angry people went to the church where Canute was praying. He knew they had come to harm him. While his enemies were still outside, King Canute received the sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Communion. He felt compassion for those who were upset enough to kill him. With all his heart he forgave his enemies. Then, as he prayed, a spear was thrown through a window and he was killed. It was July 10, 1086.
St. Canute tried to be a good king so he could thank Jesus for all the blessings he had received. We, too, should thank God every day and offer him a crown made up of good deeds.
"When they deliver you up, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you." (Mt.10:19-20)