The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland is expected to pay tribute to the victims of the Clydebank blitz, on its 70th anniversary.
On Sunday Right Reverend John Christie will preach at Clydebank’s Kilbowie St Andrew’s Church, one of the hardest hit areas by German bombers, in a commemoration service to the 500 civilians who were killed.
In his sermon the Moderator is expected to say: “We are here today to honour the memory of all those involved – those who died, those who struggled to put out the fires, those engaged in rescue work, those who began the rebuilding.
“The story of the aftermath of the Blitz has many facets: there was bravery, resilience, determination, fortitude, heartache, sorrow, tears, humour.”
But the Moderator said that there were still lessons to be learned from the bombings: “Nothing like Clydebank should ever have happened again. It did and has been going on ever since.
“Where are the peacemakers today? By failing to peacefully resolve conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, in Israel and Palestine, we devalue the memories of those who were blitzed here 70 years ago.
“The Bible calls us to live well, live wisely and live humbly, but can we in all honesty say that we have lived up to these demands?”
“Jesus speaks to us today offering a new way of thinking about life and our priorities of being different.
“Each of us here has something very precious to offer our fractured world. It is hope. It is the blessedness of peacemakers. They are an example of Christian faith at the very best.
“May they be the beginning of our wisdom which is God’s gift to us on this 70th anniversary commemoration.”
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11 March 2011