On December 10th, New Dublin Presbyterian Church responded to Pope Francis’ call for people around the world to pray at noon local time for an end to global hunger. This “wave of prayer” across time zones marked the beginning of a campaign for Roman Catholic-related charities, spearheaded by Caritas Internationalis, called “One Human Family, Food for All.” In the United States, Bread for the World urged its members to join other Christians and people of other faiths in this wave of prayer.
As part of my homily, I read the following Nelson Mandela quotes and asked people to reflect on each one. And so, I ask you as well: Try and make his words your own. Pray for the one billion people who are hungry. Pray for our nation, our leaders, and our world. Ask for repentance. Believe in our future. Place your trust in God who puts a new spirit in us. Be so inspired so that you too might “practice resurrection” (Wendell Berry).
1) It always seems impossible until it is done.
2) When people are determined they can overcome anything.
3) I can rest only for a moment, for with freedom come responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not yet ended.
4) Keep your head pointed towards the sun and your feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That is the way of defeat and death.
5) Sometimes it falls on a generation to be great. You can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom.
6) No axe is sharp enough to cut the soul of one who keeps trying, one armed with the hope that he or she will rise even in the end.
A complete text of my homily may be found here on the church’s website