Doing what you can...

Yesterday a friend posted on facebook a link to the following excerpt from a 1988 recording of BBC TV's "That's Life", honouring Sir Nicholas Winton, a stockbroker and former banker, who, before World War II, almost single-handedly organised an operation known as the Czech Kindertransport. This involved the evacuation of about 669 children, most of whom were Jewish, to Britain from German occupied Czechoslovakia. 250 further children were due to leave Prague in autumn 1939, but the invasion of Poland and subsequent declaration of war stopped that. Winton kept quiet about his humanitarian exploits for many years, until his wife Grete found a scrapbook in their attic in 1988 listing the children, their parents' names (most of whom perished in Auschwitz), and the names and addresses of the families that took them in. This then prompted the telling of his story on "That's Life" where Winton finds himself surrounded by some of those whom he had saved... (There is a slight continuity blip in the middle of the video where the audience stands up... but I suspect that was because of the limitations of 1980s British TV.)






My friend then posted after the video...
"You make a difference every day to those you love around you. Save a life, give a hug."
I was just about to mount a very high horse and send a message to my friend that included the use of the word "banal", when a post came in from Sojourners entitled "Would It Be Okay If You Hugged Me? What a Tearful Teenage Boy Taught Me About Advent." Not the catchiest title... but the content moved me almost as much as the Winton video... And it reminded me that we might not be a Nicholas Winton, (or as I said on Sunday, a Nelson Mandela) but every kindness that we share with those around us, every act of compassion and righteousness, be it saving people from death or giving a young lad a hug and the assurance that he is loved, is an expression of what Oscar Romero was saying in yesterday's quote... Seeing Christ among us... and being Christ to others...

So, let's dismount our favourite hobby horses and get on with the business of turning the word of God into flesh and blood wherever we are... In whatever way we can...


Shalom

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