Outstanding Moments

During the course of my life three world-changing events stand out in my mind; I was born and lived through the Second World War, but was too young for it to register. So the first event that made a lasting impression on me was the building of a high wall right across Berlin, separation the eastern zone from the rest, and creating the state of East Germany.The second was directly related to the first. Sitting in front of my television one evening I witnessed the incredible sight in live coverage of people actually climbing onto the top of that wall and attacking it with pickaxes, and not a shot was fired. The flood of East German people pouring through the breached wall was also moving, but less so than that first stark evidence that things were changing irreversibly. Why am I writing about this this morning? Because I am reminded again of the third event. The sight, again on my television screen, of a newly released nelson Mandela walking through the crowds from his prison cell to freedom. The impact of that event was only increased by the attitude which Mandela brought with him - forgiveness, reconciliation and a burning desire for a new nation where everyone would be treated equitably and with justice. That project is still short of coming to fruition, but now his successors must achieve it without his guiding presence in the background. R.I.P Nelson Mandela.

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