THIS Friday, March 24, will see South East Fermanagh Foundation (SEFF) bringing together at Stormont the Victims Commissioner, a range of clergy, public policy makers and those involved in the wider area of good relations – all drawn together from diverse fields on the subject of ‘Forgiveness and Reconciliation’.

This in-person event brings panellists together with victims/survivors of The Troubles to discuss issues pertaining to responsibility, justice, remorse, repentance, forgiveness, restitution and reconciliation (considering Biblical teaching against a therapeutic-based approach).

The gathering will mark the culmination of a series of webinars by SEFF.

Discussing the purpose of the project, SEFF`s Director of Services, Kenny Donaldson, said: “Across Northern Ireland, and in particular within rural areas, faith remains an important part in people’s lives and an integral part of their being.

“Whilst SEFF recognises there are those in society who are not practising Christians, there nevertheless is a substantive constituency who are, and who have voiced over many years their concern that elements within the Christian denominations have strayed from Biblical teaching on such matters [of forgiveness and reconciliation].

“Many feel that the Church has become enslaved by the politics of today, and many widows and orphans from The Troubles feel that they have been abandoned.

“Going forward, we wish to have a more cohesive relationship with the leaderships of the churches; we want to be able to collaborate together, and to ensure pathways are in place which ensure that there is adequate dialogue and consultation, especially when the churches are putting forward policy papers or positions on issues which directly impact victims/survivors.

“It is also essential that the Church reflects Biblical and not worldly teaching on these issues.”

Mr. Donaldson added: “We have been pleased to involve a wide cross-section of participants within our seminars, and those engaging with our in-person event in Stormont will also bring diversity of thinking within our discussions.

“We also acknowledge the facilitation-based support provided by Dr. Katy Radford, as well as the involvement of Thrive Ireland who have journeyed with our group over the past number of years.

“We also recognise CARSA ministries for hosting us in Rwanda, and The Victims and Survivors Service for their support in resourcing project developments.”

The event takes place in the Long Gallery at Parliament Buildings, from 10.30am to 3.30pm, with refreshments from 10am onwards.

For further information, contact Mr. Donaldson at 079 0088 2770.


Join our growing digital family. Read the biggest and best stories in Fermanagh. Click here to subscribe.