Let There Be Peace

Annestown Beach, Co. Waterford, Ireland
Annestown Beach, Co. Waterford, Ireland

I had serious doubts  about watching anything to do with commemorating the outbreak of World War One  but the twilight ceremony from the Saint Symphorien Military Cemetery in Belgium on August 4th, though very poignant, gave me a sense of hope that maybe, just maybe lessons might be learned from history about the futility of war.

To see  representatives from both sides of  World War One stand side by side to mourn the loss of the millions who were killed and injured was heartwarming and, yes, it was great to see our very own Irish President, Michael D. Higgins, represent us with such dignity.

War has always terrified me and seemed so futile. Growing up here in Ireland during The Troubles was a dreadful experience ~ especially as we lived very near the border for many of the worst years.

However intractable a situation may seem, and the Irish situation, seemed utterly hopeless at times, it is incumbent on all to recognise that ‘talking’ not ‘killing’ is the way forward in this world that we all share.

As I walked along the shore this morning here in Co. Waterford with only the waves breaking and the gulls calling to break the silence, I so, so wished that all those who are currently going through the living hell that is war could know this peace.

If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other. ( Mother Teresa)



Author: socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and sense of place.

11 thoughts on “Let There Be Peace”

  1. Well said Jean. Personally I’m a bit bemused why there’s a fuss to commemorate the beginning of WW1 (rather than the end of it and remembering lives lost throughout) but I must say it seemed to have been well-handled, and Jersey had a particularly touching evening in the Royal Square.

    1. Thanks Roy! Yes the beginning of a war is an odd time to commemorate and I might as well tell you now that I have complete heebie jeebies about commemorating 1916 Rising here.

      1. Re.1916 I’ve a feeling it will be done with a bit more perspective now that people understand history a little more. Only the few will be daft enough to be strutting and celebrating. It was a defining moment but a most unhappy time for all concerned.

  2. Yes, very touching, Jean, and the quote is beautiful, too. My prayers are never ending for everyone going through hell all over the world…it’s just so overwhelming. World Peace would be lovely and miraculous. xx

    1. Deb, apologies for the terrible delay in responding to you. Your comment slipped through the net somehow.
      Thanks very much for writing and I just hope we humans can learn before more lives are needlessly lost.

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