Those who keep track of such things tell us there were more Christian martyrs in the 20th century than all the previous centuries combined. The 21st century seems to be following that same pattern. Martyrdom has marked the Church – the people of God – since the beginning. Jesus spoke of the blood of Abel and of Zechariah, while we well-remember the blood of Stephen. The fifth seal opened by the Lamb presents a scene of the holy martyrs crying out to God. We must understand that Christian martyrdom will always be a part of earthly reality. It proclaims victory!