Mar 24, 2016

We must not “close down in fear” in light of Brussels attacks

We must not “close down in fear” in light of Brussels attacks

Bishop of Limerick Brendan Leahy has said that in trying to come to terms with the horrific attacks in Brussels and their devastating consequences, we must not at the same time “close down in fear”.


In his Homily Speaking at the Chrism Mass in St. John’s Cathedral, Limerick this evening, Bishop Leahy said,  “In the year of Mercy, and at this very dark time following what happened in Brussels, we need to apply mercy in its broadest sense. Mercy isn’t just about forgiveness but it is about general goodness towards people.  It’s about healing the sick, welcoming the stranger, consoling the afflicted, advising the doubtful and encouraging the despondent.


“We need to remember Pope Francis’ wonderful words, that ‘we need mercy as without it our world grows colder’.   So, as we try to come to terms with what has happened in Brussels and what has happened elsewhere in Europe of late, it is all the more important that we engage in corporal and spiritual works of mercy.


“As seen in recent days, we so need warmth in the world right now.  So, rather than closing down in fear we have to open up in a new way to people, not least those we don’t know.  We need to welcome them in and extend the hand of friendship.


“The instinct right now would, understandably, be to pull back and close in on ourselves but that would merely give in to people behind such attacks, people who merely want separation, mistrust and fear.  If anything now is the time to increase our mercy and show them that their deeds only bring us closer together.”