Prayers said for Nelson Mandela

Published Sunday, 08 December 2013
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The congregation at St Anne's Cathedral in Belfast held a minutes silence and joined with other churches across Northern Ireland and the world to mark a world day of prayer for Nelson Mandela.

The day of prayer was held to remember the former South African President who passed away earlier this week.

Special services of commemoration and celebration were held throughout the world to mark the passing of the iconic leader.

The Dean of Belfast, the Very Reverend John Mann told UTV Nelson Mandela had contributed to the whole of humanity.

He said: "We decided before the service it was important to mark the death in some way.

"As well as what he did and said, there was also something symbolic in the way he was able to break down barriers and to be able to do things that other people seemed not able to do.

"And a lot of that came from his long experience in prison."

He continued: "This was an important day to mark and with deep thanksgiving for what Nelson Mandela has contributed to the whole of humanity.

"He will be remembered for helping people to express their hurt, but also for helping them along the path to reconciliation."

His legacy will be for the way he touched so many people's hearts.

Rev. John Mann, Dean of Belfast

Mr Mandela's death on Thursday provoked a worldwide outpouring of emotion, with Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness joining the likes of the Queen and Prime Minister David Cameron among those paying their respects.

The Deputy First Minister has said he hopes to attend the funeral in South Africa next Sunday.

Tributes have been paid to the anti-apartheid revolutionary from across the world and the Belfast public has been paying its respects after the city council opened a book of condolence.

Mandela died aged 95, after a long battle with illness.

The ailing former leader had retired from public life almost a decade ago, having been vulnerable to respiratory problems since contracting tuberculosis during his 27 years of incarceration.

In a televised address on Thursday night, the country's president Jacob Zuma said: "Our nation has lost its greatest son. Our people have lost a father.

"What made Nelson Mandela great was precisely what made him human. We saw in him what we seek in ourselves."

© UTV News
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14 Comments
Ryan in An Dun wrote (135 days ago):
@maggie in North west. The bitterness in your comment is clear to see. This story is about Nelson Mandela. I don't understand people like you that bring Sinn Fein into everything just to get a dig at them. Have a bit of respect please. Nelson Mandela was a great man and should be remembered as one.
jimmymac in canada wrote (137 days ago):
Keep your nasty words to yourselves.. Maggie and Minkey this not the time or the place to speak ill of Martin Mc Guinness,or Nelson Mandela, Just remember there will be a great scene of pride in the hearts and minds of so many people in the North of Ireland, when our wee deputy first minister, stands respectfully shoulder to shoulder with all world leaders to honor the great Nelson Mandela, Bon voyage Mr Mc Guiness you do us proud ps difficult sending post....?
Lorna in Belfast wrote (137 days ago):
No one can deny the similarities with SA and NI, politically and historically. But I definitely don't think anyone can really argue that someone like any of our political figures can even begin to be measured against Mandela, they can't but what should be measured is the change that is possible. At least Mandela was able to see that change was possible, only when you are willing yourself to consider it, and then do something about it, that it will be possible and possible if your not on your own high horse! Long live Mandela.
Declan in Jordanstown wrote (137 days ago):
Few men or women can stand as equals with Madiba. Ghandi, Martin Luther King Jnr, Mother Theresa- these greats were so great, not necessarily because they acted as persuaders for their causes, but because they sought to teach their supporters to empathise with the 'other side'. They, and Mandela, taught, and actually lived, empathy before antagonism, forgiveness before revenge and hope for the future before retribution for the past. Madiba joins them as the role models we should encourage our children to be. Thank you Mr Mandela.
Mark in Belfast wrote (137 days ago):
To all the sad sectarian bitter individuals commenting here, truth is nobdy knows you, the world knows the name madiba !
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