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Viewpoint from Keith Morris 31/01/2020

KeithMorrisJuly16Keith Morris

publisher of the Christian community website


as published in the Great Yarmouth Mercury


2020 – A good Samaritan in an unfamiliar world

With our two children showing us a clean pair of heels in terms of world travel, late last year my wife and I decided we needed to make a big trip ourselves, so as not to get left too far behind
Global warming concerns set to one side, we decided to head for South Africa in October for two weeks to join a small group of unknown fellow travellers
dove leftOne concern was, ‘would we get on with and even like our new holiday companions who we would be spending the next two weeks with in a minibus riding around a foreign country?’
When we got into the flight lounge at Heathrow, late one Saturday evening, we had a look around to see if we could spot anyone who we thought would be in our group
But before we could hardly glance up, a friendly gentleman opposite us leaned over and - spotting me pulling on my flight socks - said: “Are you with the Exodus group?” He was obviously an old hand at this game and claimed to have spotted most of the group already
On the plane we were not due to sit next to our new friend, Andrew, so we said “we will see you on the other side” – and parted company
We next saw him in a different departure lounge at Johannesburg airport, where there was a very unfortunate incident taking place, with someone lying prostrate on the floor and a paramedic attempting chest compressions. The attempt failed and a sheet was drawn over the poor fellow’s head
Dove rightWhile we watched on, Andrew got up and went over to a lady who was visibly upset by the incident – it turned out she was a doctor who had bravely joined in the attempt to save a life. Andrew spoke quietly to her and then joined us in the queue for another plane
I was impressed
Again we had to leave our new acquaintance for seats in a different part of the plane for an internal flight and were left wondering why he alone had been prepared to step forward and offer a few words of comfort to a total stranger in a very awkward situation
We pondered that he must be a professional - either a doctor or a priest we thought
Later that day, when we got to our destination and could chat properly over a glass or two of South African Shiraz, it turned out that one of us was right
Our own Good Samaritan, in civvies not in a dog collar before anyone jumps to that conclusion, was a Catholic priest on holiday – or so he thought
The rest of our group of fellow-travellers were also a great bunch by the way and we had a wonderful two weeks – even though we had to watch England lose the rugby World Cup final to the Springboks while we were there

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