75th Anniversary of Victory in Europe Day

Statement from Rev Sam McGuffin, President of the Methodist Church in Ireland

As we reach the 8th of May and the 75th Anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, we find ourselves unable to gather to commemorate, and perhaps even reluctant to celebrate, this occasion. 

 

We should of course spare a thought for the vast number of people who died during that awful conflict and the even greater number of those who suffered as a consequence of it. We can recall the horror and trauma experienced by those on the front lines. We can reflect on the economic cost of it all. We can remember the factors that led to victory, some of which were: personal resilience, community togetherness and determination, personal and public sacrifice, national willingness to do what was needed; a concerted international effort to overcome the adversary, a firm trust in elected leaders to give good guidance, and a strong faith in God.  We can also reflect on the fact that, whilst victory was won, life for everyone all around the world was never the same again.

 

75 years later we find ourselves waging a different war. On this occasion we face an invisible adversary, though the conflict is still on a global scale. Hundreds of thousands of people have died already and millions are suffering across the world. The economic cost is enormous. The day when victory will come is still distant and uncertain. 

 

To be victorious in this present conflict we again need personal resilience, community togetherness and determination, personal and public sacrifice, national willingness to do what is needed; a concerted international effort to overcome the adversary, a firm trust in elected leaders to give good guidance, and a strong faith in God.  We can also reflect on the fact that, whilst victory will be won, life for everyone all around the world will never be the same again.

 

As our forefathers and mothers prayed, persevered, and prevailed, so let us do the same.