Charles I, King of England, was martyred by the Roundheads in 1649, after the king's forces were defeated by the usurper, Oliver Cromwell. Charles was an ardent defender of the Anglican Catholic faith in the lands by the grace of God under his dominion. His reign saw the defense of the faith, with the aid of Archbishop William Laud, the restoration of altars which had been torn out by 'reforming' zeal. Most of all, King Charles was a man of unimpugnable devotion to our Lord Jesus Christ, in whose service he forfeited his life.
To his son, later King Charles II, he said before his death:
I pray God blesse You, and establish Your Kingdomes in righteousnesse, Your Soule in true Religion, and Your honour in the love of God and Your people.
And if God will have disloyalty perfected by My destruction; let My memory ever, with My name, live in you; as of Your Father, that loves You: and once a KING of three flourishing Kingdomes; whom God thought fit to honour, not onely with the Scepter and Government of them, but also with the suffering many indignities, and an untimely death for them; while I studied to preserve the rights of the Church, the power of the Lawes, the honour of My Crowne, the priviledge of Parliaments, the liberties of My People, and my owne Conscience, which, I thank God, is dearer to Me than a thousand Kingdomes.
I know God can, I hope he yet will restore Me to My Rights. I cannot despaire either of his mercy, or of My Peoples love and pity.
At worst, I trust I shall but go before You to a better Kingdome, which God hath prepared for Me, and Me for it, through My Saviour Jesus Christ, to whose mercies I commend You and all Mine.
Farewell, till We meet, if not on Earth, yet in Heaven.O Lord we offer unto thee all praise and thanks for the glory of Thy grace that shined forth in Thine anointed servant Charles; and we beseech Thee to give us all grace. by a careful studious imitation of this Thy blessed Saint and Martyr, that we may be made worthy to receive benefit by his prayers, which he, in communion with the Church Catholic, offers up unto Thee for that part of it here Militant, through Thy Son, our Blessed Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.
Holy Charles, pray for us!