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"Bishop's War Appeal in Limerick" |

“Bishop’s War Appeal in Limerick”

In an emotionally charged address during the annual meeting of the Limerick Housing Association on Wednesday, the Bishop of Limerick, Dr O’Dwyer, delivered a poignant message on the ongoing war, highlighting the unprecedented scale of conflict affecting the most civilised nations. His words painted a vivid picture of the horror and futility that war brings, emphasising the mass slaughter happening day and night, involving not just the uncivilised but the most refined and cultured societies on earth.

The Bishop’s reflection on the war was both a lament and a call to humanity, noting the strange contradiction of advanced nations being engulfed in such primal violence. He pointed out the powerlessness felt by ordinary people as they witness their leaders succumb to a “wild fury like an evil spirit.” In response to this dire situation, Dr O’Dwyer underscored the power of prayer, urging the faithful to pray for divine intervention to calm the “angry passions of men” and end the conflict.

Amidst the grim discourse on the war, the Bishop also touched on a silver lining—the outpouring of sympathy and support for refugees, particularly those fleeing from Belgium. He praised the community’s readiness to welcome these individuals into Limerick, expressing hope that both the affluent and the less fortunate would extend a helping hand to make the refugees’ stay as comfortable as possible. His call to action was not just about providing shelter but also about offering kindness and compassion to alleviate the suffering of those displaced by the war.

Dr O’Dwyer’s message extended beyond the immediate response to the refugee crisis, encompassing a broader appeal for peace and humanity. He reminded his audience of the Christian duty to love one’s neighbour and the importance of showing compassion in times of need. The Bishop’s vision was one of unity and solidarity, aiming to foster a community spirit that could offer a beacon of hope amidst the darkness of war.

As the speech concluded to loud applause, it was clear that the Bishop’s words had struck a chord with those present. His appeal for peace, combined with a call to action in support of the Belgian refugees, underscored the crucial role that communities like Limerick can play in addressing the broader impacts of conflict. The Bishop’s message was a powerful reminder of the resilience of the human spirit and the capacity for kindness in the face of adversity, urging everyone to contribute to a world where compassion prevails over conflict.

Freeman’s Journal – Thursday 12 November 1914

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