September 21st, 2018

By the Way: Blessed are the peacemakers

By Medicine Hat News on November 11, 2017.

If it will take generations to get over a prairie fire, it takes even longer to get over a war. After 100 years there remains scars from the First World War. While it takes a great effort and sacrifice to fight a war, it takes even more dedication to prevent one.

The late prime minister Lester B. Pearson worked to prevent a war over the Suez Canal. Dag Hammaskjold worked to offset war while secretary general of the United Nations and lost his life in doing so. Chester Ronning of Canada worked as a liaison between the U.S.A. and China to prevent another fire. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth leaves everyone dead.” His non-violent creed prevented a civil war in the U.S.

Each of these persons had one other thing in common. Pearson grew up in the parsonage of a Methodist minister. In “Markings,” the diary of Hammarskjsold, it is revealed that he was a man of deep Christian faith. Chester Ronning was the son of a Lutheran missionary and grew up in China. Martin Luther King Jr, was a Baptist minister in the southern U.S.

It is all too true that it is possible to win a war and lose the peace. This week a city was finally freed from the ISIS to find that there is nothing left of it. The end of a war is often the seed for the next one. To prevent one is prior to bringing peace.

Jesus, the peacemaker, said, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called children of God.” Matt. 5:9. Through Bob Rae, Canada is making an effort to bring peace to Bangladesh and its neighbour from which refugees are fleeing. What can one person do? Think again!

Sidney Nelsonispastor emeritus of Unity Lutheran parish. He has served parishes in Frontier, Lethbridge, MontanaandMontreal.

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