Of all the atrocities committed in Northern Ireland during the long years of the Troubles, there was one that always stood out above the rest for me, and that was the one that occurred at the war memorial in Enniskillen in November 1987. Eleven people died that day, including a young, 20 year old nurse, Marie Wilson. Within a day, her father, Gordon Wilson, forgave his daughter’s killers. He said it was the Christian thing to do. It was highly controversial at the time; many people were stunned that such forgiveness could be possible. But I was impressed, and thought then that some day I’d like to go to Enniskillen to pay my respects.
In her Christmas message that year, the Queen praised Gordon Wilson’s courage, and commitment to his Christian faith. It is said that the atrocity at Enniskillen and this extraordinary act of forgiveness contributed to eventual peace in Northern Ireland.