Tuesday, August 09, 2005

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly. Welcome to Ballymena.

Four weeks ago in Ahoghill, Co. Antrim, Catholic grandmother Kathleen McCaughey was forced to leave the house she'd lived in all her life. Her property had been daubed repeatedly with sectarian abuse, and she was sent hate mail and death threats to herself and her family, poor woman.

Three weeks ago, All Saints RC church in Ballymena was smeared with paint, and the Church of Our Lady in Harryville was plastered with racist graffiti.

As I write, Catholic residents of Ahoghill, Ballymena and other places are being terrorised out of their homes by thugs born to Protestant parents. They bring shame to everything they think they stand for, and they should be shunned, isolated and locked up.

Mrs McCaughey was well liked by her Protestant neighbours. They stood by her, and she paid generous tribute to them (and they to her). Are Catholics and Protestants really so different? Course not.

Back to Harryville. On 28th July, members of Ballymena's "High Kirk" Presbyterian church took it upon themselves to clean off the graffiti as an expression of solidarity. Next day they went along to All Saints and handed out roses to Massgoers. Fr Paul Symonds said, "It was an absolutely lovely gesture, one of sheer love. It was a very gracious gesture and I felt it was a very much a mirror of God's love". His parishioners thanked the High Kirk people by inviting them in for a cup of tea together. Big people, all.

Now there's a Big Thing we can all do:
Let's drink more tea together.

1 Comments:

At 1:11 p.m., Anonymous paulconnor said...

The reassuring actions taken by the church communitys in Ballymena is excellent , more groups should be encouraged to do the same.
Regretable, then, many of our political representatives and those of our neighbours seem quite content to select only those attacks perpatrated on their community for scrutiny and public attention, exploiting peoples misery and breeding antagonism where there could be good will, and only for the same tired redolent political nonsenses they always have.
The blanket are calling for internment and An Polaxed are demandig (basically) shoot to kill,
its a far cry from 'troops out'isn't it?
Meanwhile I.K.P. and the boys are only concerned with the equivalent maddness in Lurgan etc.
contrast and comparison are apparently up to the audience.
As the folk in Ballymena have shown ,beneath the loud scumbag minority , there a big old silent majority thats sick of seeing our peoples good name draged through the mud for the sake of a riot or two for the wingnuts, unfortunately,
certain influental media and political groups have no interest in bringing this to the public eye....

 

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