John Hume ‘ceaselessly affirmed’ non-violence
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Mr. Martin was speaking at a John and Pat Hume Foundation dialogue series event in the Playhouse on Friday.
“At home and abroad, John brilliantly and ceaselessly affirmed an irrefutable moral and intellectual case for non-violence.
“As he said so often, so simply and so profoundly: ‘the only consequence of violence is a more deeply divided people’; ‘the essence of unity in every society, is to accept diversity’; and...we need on this island to ‘work the common ground... spilling our sweat and not our blood, to grow together…at our own speed’.
“These precepts would come to be accepted by all sides; and they represent the DNA of the Good Friday Agreement,” the Taoiseach said in a keynote address.
He went on to recognise the contribution John’s late wife Pat Hume had made towards realising peace in Ireland and Britain.
“As John always acknowledged, he couldn’t have done what he did without the outstanding contribution of Pat.
“His partner in family and political life; his most trusted advisor and his most courageous and unstinting supporter. John, with characteristic wit and warmth, often said, ‘I’m a parcel and Pat delivers me.’ Theirs was an inspirational partnership for family and community; for peace and progress...John - working side by side with Pat - left us a powerful legacy of peace and a shining example of striving always for reconciliation.
“I believe that their life’s work will continue to guide us on this island, just as they will remain a source of hope and inspiration for those who champion the cause of peace around the world.”