Thursday, September 21, 2006

September 18, 2006 - 15:56
Editorial - Sister Leonella, yet another humanitarian murdered
By Bashir Goth

"I forgive", she said, "I forgive". True to her nature of kindness, altruism and a heart devoid of rancor and vengeance, Sister Leonella Sgorbati, had with these words taught a lesson to her cowardly killers in her last breath of life.

She was adamant to the last minute to emphasize that the criminal action of a few lost souls were not going to rob her of her love for humanity and the beauty of forgiveness. She refused her goodness to be defeated by evil and her humanitarian mission to be overshadowed by cruelty. She lived as an angel of mercy and died as a saint.

Just like her countrywoman Annalena Tonelli before here, sister Leonella Sgorbati viewed her killers as misguided and disturbed individuals who needed her help and being on her deathbed the only help she could offer was to embrace them and protect them despite their despicable action.

Like Annalena, Sister Leonella had for many years cared for the orphaned children, the mental patients, the infirm elders, the sick and abandoned individuals and the marginalized children of God. She chose her Spartan life in Somalia to a life of plenty in her own country. She found her paradise in caring for the sick and the destitute in one of the most dangerous places and culturally one of the most ungrateful people on earth.

As a martyr she lived and as a martyr she died. And heaven knows that she will reap the good she sowed on earth in the life after.

She forgave her killers because unlike us ordinary human beings she saw that evil could only be defeated by goodness. But we ordinary human beings know that there are certain evil men that cannot be transformed by any amount of good. We, therefore, demand these hapless and mean human beings be brought to justice and punished for their heinous crime.

It is time for the Islamists of Mogadishu to stop shifting the blame and act responsibly to bring these culprits to justice. It is time for them to prove to the world that Islamic justice is not only about flogging delinquents and burning music videos but also protecting and respecting human life regardless of race and religion.

It is about time that they show the world that those foreigners who care for our poor and our sick are holier and deserve God’s mercy more than any self proclaimed cleric who sees nothing but evil come from people of other religions.

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