You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God. Exodus 20:3-5a

Eulalia, one of Spain’s most celebrated martyrs, was killed in Merida as a teenager in 304.

At the time of the Emperor Diocletian she was brought before a magistrate, Dacian, who tried to persuade her to give up her faith. She replied to his arguments very skilfully and spoke against the pagan gods. Dacian showed her torture instruments and said to her, “These you shall escape if you will touch a little salt and incense with the tip of your finger.” But she trampled on the sacrificial cake and spat at the judge.

Greatly angered, he ordered her to be tortured and killed by burning. Following the torture, as she was burned, some fire caught her hair and surrounded her face and she was stifled by the fire and smoke.

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;

Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art 

Thou my best Thought, by day or by night,

Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Irish hymn c. 8th century

Translated by Mary E. Byrne (1880-1931)

Versed by Eleanor Hull (1860-1935)

Dr Patrick Sookhdeo is the International Director of Barnabas Fund and the Executive Director of the Oxford Centre for Religion and Public Life.