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Our heart’s desire: We should not live in anger but seek peace and reconciliation

07 June 2017 | by John Wilson

 

We must not live in anger but seek reconciliation, not look for revenge but, rather, for peace and justice. The example set by Fr Christian de Chergé in Algeria can offer guidance and inspiration / by John Wilson

Having celebrated a joyous confirmation Mass on the vigil of Pentecost I was awoken from dozing last Saturday evening by a phone call at 10.33 p.m. It was my Mum. “Where are you?” she asked. “At home,” I replied. “Why, what’s wrong” “We were worried that you might be in London,” she said. “There’s been another attack.”

It was a contact that countless people would have been trying to make as news of a new terrorist assault prompted the urgent need to check that loved ones were safe. We now know that, tragically, not everyone was safe. The outrageous blasphemy of terrorism, from the hands of three indiscriminate killers, left dozens of victims murdered or wounded, some critically so; for many the emotional havoc wreaked by the attack will last a lifetime. The emergency services heroically and speedily curtailed the mayhem and cared for the injured. The cowardice and carnage visited by three strangers was countered by the bravery and tenderness of many more other strangers; men and women who defended and protected, heedless of their own safety. The blight of terror provoked a reaction of strength. In the wake of Westminster Bridge, Manchester Arena, and now London Bridge and Borough Market, hatred has not had the last word. As so many have said, love is, in the end, stronger than death.





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