by Rev. Fr. V.V. Paulose, Toronto, Canada
"Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honourable in the sight of all.” (Romans 12:17)
The indomitable spirit of a mother to help the country and clan of her son's killers.
People are in the mood for retaliation and revenge. That is the order of the day. So it is a never ending saga of enmity and killing and bloodshed in all the lands of earth even into the holy sanctuaries of churches, temples and mosques. In essence, the human beings are in the order of deceleration of civilization and seem to be going back and shrinking into the amoebic single-cell creature of origin.
Revenge begets revenge. This understanding never makes man to change his ill-conceived character of tit for tat. Only the spirit of God can do the difference. It is hovering on earth to descend onto whoever is listening to his voice of love. There are still a few welcoming it and applying it in their lives. The families, churches and nations at large, our own civilization and life exist by this kind of loving species. In Mathew 5:39, Jesus says, “But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If somebody strike you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.” In Proverb 20:22, David advises, “Do not say, 'I will repay evil'; wait for the Lord, and he will deliver you.”
Sally Goodrich lost her son, Peter along with dozens of men and women on 11th September 2001 (9/11) on board a routine flight from Boston to Los Angles which disappeared into a ball of flames in the sky by the terrorist attack of Al Qaida operating from Afghanistan under the master plan and direction of Bin Laden. Peter was a fragile, dreamy boy who suffered from dyslexia, but he graduated with high honours in math from Bates College in 1989, and he was a strapping 6’1” track star who’d made it in All-American six times. He impressed everyone not just with his brilliance but his generosity and warmth. He couldn’t pass a homeless person on the street without giving him money.
In April 2006, Sara, the 61 year old mother of Peter paid a visit to Afghanistan that changed her life. She dedicated her life for the education of young girls in that land from where the operation of her son's death was plotted and meticulously executed. She herself raised $236,000 to build a beautiful and well-equipped school in Afghanistan. Sally and her husband Don, have dedicated their lives for the welfare of girls on their son’s killers' land or the enemy land. She says , “When I’m in Afghanistan, I feel like I’m in Peter mode. I feel connected to him. I’m fortunate to be there. Anyone who’s in pain should have the experience of being plunked down in a place where everyone is heartbroken.”
Jesus, let us love all. Remove all killings, mayhem and bloodshed in budding generation. We pray for a profound change in the mind-set of all terrorists including Al-Qaida. We pray for all the young girls who are not in a position to get quality education in a free atmosphere. We pray for bold activists like Sara and Don. All we ask in the name of Jesus. Amen.
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