"Are we prepared to promote conditions in which the living contact with God can be reestablished? For our lives today have become godless to the point of complete vacuity. God is no longer with us in the conscious sense of the word. He is denied, ignored, excluded from every claim to have a part in our daily life." - Alfred Delp, S.J.

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

A man and his rabbit.



I was looking for photos of Newcomen Bridge in Dublin, when I came across a story about a homeless man and his rabbit.  It's an old story by now, although I only discovered it yesterday.

Meet John Byrne, The Homeless Man Ready To Die Saving His Pet
John Byrne has beeen living on the streets of Dublin since the age of 14. He is one of approximately 5,000 homeless people in Ireland at the moment, and for John, home isn’t measured in square feet or granite countertops. Instead home takes the shape of a small brown rabbit and a Jack Russell Terrier who show him what it means to be a family.
One July morning, John was begging on the O’Connell Bridge when 18-year-old Gary Kearney took him by surprise. Kearney grabbed Barney right out of John’s arms and hurled him over the bridge and into the river below.
Breathless and in shock, John looked over the side of the bridge with dread. He was expecting the worst but was relieved to see that Barney had not died on impact. The bunny was swimming in circles in the water below. Without hesitation, John joined him in the River Liffey.
Around 200 people watched as John struggled to save Barney from being swept away. Read more here.

I wanted to do a post refuting something another blogger wrote, but it seemed to me it would be like taking her pet rabbit from her arms and throwing it in the river.

It's better to lose and leave to others their own opinion ...
MY CHILD, do not be curious. Do not trouble yourself with idle cares. What matters this or that to you? Follow Me. What is it to you if a man is such and such, if another does or says this or that? You will not have to answer for others, but you will have to give an account of yourself. Why, then, do you meddle in their affairs? - Imitation Bk III, Ch. 24

19 comments:

  1. ...actually, I don't think I can bear to read the rest of it. Powerful love, it comes as it will, doesn't it - love of people is so very, very hard....
    and yes it Is so "much better to lose and leave others to their own opinion".

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    1. It turns out well though. Isn't it so hard to see innocents suffer though?! Big hug!

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  2. I would love the throw the a-hole who did that off the bridge.

    I see homeless people with their pets all the time. My great sin is that when I see them I worry more about the animal then I do the person..its terrible I know.

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    1. Their pets are necessary for them. I think the pets care for them when no one else will, and they also give them a sense of responsibility for someone other than themselves. Together they affect our hearts - they open our hearts. It doesn't matter if you worry more about the pet, because the pet opens your heart to the homeless person and his misery. See how much you love?!

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  3. Ah, Terry, thanks! I prefer to think of it your way! That is why I followed the blind man and his guide dog down a smelly dank alley in the loop with some shady characters hanging out by the garbage dumpsters..and had to redirect them to a less dangerous route..and had to sit there while the dog took a dump before I could lead them out. all the while keeping my eye on the shady folks....its because of my love for all humans....not because I was more worried about the dog!

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    1. See how much you love! Big hug.

      I'm sad about the Jordanian pilot who was killed today. I don't understand anything when news like this surfaces. How could anyone burn someone alive?

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    2. I know..its insane..They are worse then animals..

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    3. It makes me want to get all my people together go to the mountains build a big fence and load up the guns..though a liquor store and a bad bar have to be in the vicinity.

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    4. When someone (rarely -) brings a dog to the nursing home...oh ! some few people are so happy ! such as me - an oasis in an ocean of insanity.
      however: as one learns in life, asking for a humble heart can be...well...humbling. It is really getting to me. And then I realized: it is they, the residents, who, in all their intensely demanding, difficult, maddening neediness, who are the gift to me, not, as I was occasionally (?) thinking, "I" the great good for them. It requires a lot of....well...humility. What they must put up with when I scowl at the end of the day ! when I (yes, I do -) walk away sometimes just wearily slightly shaking my head and allowing my shoulders to bow. ugh. how ....umm....un-Therese-like. I was better a while ago. Much to learn: to un-learn.
      It comes back to the unconditional Love of animals. Their seeming acquiescence, acceptance. Like a lamb. I had a printmaker friend who had a rabbit she Dearly Loved, the subject of many, many drawings, mono-prints, several of which I have here, on my walls. Such deep grief when the tender little friend died. What do they ask of us, for themselves, nothing. Truly they are God's gift to us, comfort in so many times of inability to be with 'humanity'.
      I can not but help to contemplate the inner horror of the Isis members, the deadening: what turmoil & tragedy entered their lives to lead them to this state of cruelty such that if they did any of these acts to 'even' an animal, here in our place they would prosecuted, shamed. "We", or, their captives, are as nothing to them, We are the animals. What a confusing & terrifying turn this all taken.
      I am so exhausted I now realize this makes no sense. Also I think of St Jeanne d'arc.

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    5. Consolidates you are a really, genuine good person and sweet soul. We need people like you in this world.

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    6. Mack - thank you so much - I do not feel any of that - but I will try to consolidate my dark/despairing self with my better one...but isn't this just the perpetual fight within...'peace be with you' -

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  4. Consolata, those raised to hate don't value life.

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  7. It's good that this guy saved his rabbit, but just because you're Catholic doesn't mean you have to save all the rabbits.

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  8. He's very close to the Rabitowitz family.

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  9. We have all kinds of animal care services for people who can't afford food & vet bills because of poverty or homelessness. Some say it"s a waste, but I think there are angels among the furry, four-legged creatures of this world.

    We have a new puppy and it's amazing how he builds a bridge between us and homeless folks who normally sit stoney-faced on the street. They love to pet him and let him jump up and lick their faces. Their entire demeanor changes, and we have great conversations about dogs they used to have, and so on.

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  10. We have all kinds of animal care services for people who can't afford food & vet bills because of poverty or homelessness. Some say it"s a waste, but I think there are angels among the furry, four-legged creatures of this world.

    We have a new puppy and it's amazing how he builds a bridge between us and homeless folks who normally sit stoney-faced on the street. They love to pet him and let him jump up and lick their faces. Their entire demeanor changes, and we have great conversations about dogs they used to have, and so on.

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Please comment with charity and avoid ad hominem attacks. I exercise the right to delete comments I find inappropriate. If you use your real name there is a better chance your comment will stay put.