The long game of peace – by George Danes

This week we focus on the theme of ‘Peace’ for the second week of Advent. Like Christmas itself and ‘hope’ which we explored last week, peace is also a long game.

One of our 7:30am congregation members, George Danes offers this reflection on how a persons idea of peace can change over time. We pray that you find a sense of real peace and actively contribute to the long game of peace this Christmas.

From George:

The most famous air raid of the second world war was the Dambusters raid on dams in 1943, ‘Operation Chastise.” The RAF’s 617 Squadron attacked the Mohne, Eder and Sopre Dams in Nazi Germany. They used a weapon called the bouncing bomb. The bombs caused catastrophic flooding of the Ruhr Valley and the villages in the Eder Valley.

The bouncing bomb was invented by Barnes Neville Wallis, an English scientist, engineer and inventor. Barnes Wallis had a string of other inventions including the Wellington Bomber.

In the Dambusters raid the RAF lost 63 aircrew killed, 3 captured and 8 aircraft destroyed.

The British Government awarded Barnes Wallis Ten Thousand Pounds. His grief at the loss of so many airmen in the dams raid was such, he couldn’t personally accept it and donated it to charity.

He quoted Samuel 23:17: “and it said, far be it from me, O Lord to do this. Is this not the blood of the men that went in jeopardy of their lives? Therefore he would not drink it. These things did these three mighty men.”

Even though he was the inventor of weapons of mass destruction, for that moment in his life, he was transformed into a pacifist.

I carry the Samuel quote on my phone to remind me of its power.

George Danes