09 April 2012

Bonfire Night. . .

Much to the dismay of my children, there just weren't any fireworks to celebrate our Independence Day--can't imagine why!! :)  I did enjoy the irony of living here on the 4th!

We were able to see some fireworks, but rather than it being on a hot, humid, buggy July night, it was on a cold, crisp, muddy November night!  And it occured to me that since it gets dark much earlier in November, for the first time ever, all my kids were awake when the fireworks started!!

Bonfire Night, AKA Guy Fawkes Night, is celebrated (primarily in England) each year on the 5th of November.  Catholics persecuted under Queen Elizabeth I were upset that her successor, James I, wasn't more tolerant of their religion.  A group of 13 men decided to take violent action and hatched a plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament, killing King James I, possibly the Prince of Wales, and members of Parliament.  Some of the plotters began to feel guilty about the civilian casualties that were sure to occur and leaked the plan to friends in high places.  Guy Fawkes was the unlucky one guarding the 36 barrels of gunpowder hidden in the cellar of the Houses of Parliament when the plot was uncovered; the King's guard caught, tortured, and executed Fawkes. That night in 1605, bonfires were set alight to celebrate the safety of the King. Since then, November 5th has become known as Bonfire Night.   The event is commemorated every year with fireworks and burning effigies of Guy Fawkes on a bonfire. 

The irony of us joining in the celebration of thwarting and burning persecuted Catholics was pointed out to us by a friend from our Catholic Church. . .luckily, we didn't have to explain much of anything to the girls!!

Hanging out with friends from church.