Today was one of those days when you are woken by a phone call and the day you planned is completely changed. A bomb had exploded in the parish at a local business park, beside a hotel. Thankfully no-one was injured. I found myself asking, 'What is a bomb!' it is from a word meaning 'a deep hollow noise'. And, I thought to myself that describes what has happened here. It has a hollowness, and an empty quality. It can only destroy and empty the value and joy out of life. People have woken to find their business premises destroyed, new opportunities foreclosed.
As one of the local Christian leaders I had an opportunity to go on radio. People have experienced something terrible, and yet they are thinking about ,and speaking about, hope. This is good. The voice of the terrorist rings an empty hollow truth, they cannot deliver their agenda by way of violence and destruction!
Please pray for all who have been affected by this wanton act. I have lived nearly 40 years and many of those were in the midst of attacks on normal community life. The people of Derry do not want this. It is a hollow, wanton, and empty noise we could do without.
In its place we will sound a voice of prayer, calling out to the bringer of peace to embolden and strengthen our voices that they might be heard, give hope and sustain our peace building.