Photo by Jan Spierings, the Pelicans
Rugby was always a penitential activity for me! However, Fr Bobby Gilmore is a Columban missionary, ordained in 1963. His story ‘My Back Tooth’ goes back to his boyhood experience of being bullied on the rugby field. Follow the link to read the whole article in ‘Far East’ magazine for December 2020, pp16-17.
What really surprised me was the acceptance of the physical aspects of the game, the tolerance and the camaraderie during and after the game.
If our coach was aware of over aggressive physical play, he immediately took the player aside and privately cautioned him without a put down or embarrassment … However, that does not mean that it did not happen when unobserved …
Fr Gilmore refers to bullied people becoming ‘prisoners of anguish’ well after they lose contact with the bully; I felt it to be an appropriate reflection for Lent because we should be looking out and speaking out when we see bullying.
The work of missionaries is often described as the Church’s good news story. Learn more about what the Columban missionary family is doing to create a better world for those on the margins. Subscribe to the Far East by calling the Columban Mission Office on 01564 772 096 with your credit or debit card details, or email your subscription request to firstname.lastname@example.org .