by Sr. Jo Anne Kelly MMM Ireland 28.09.2022
It was a dull breezy morning when I set off for my early morning walk. As usual at this time of year, I took the three steps up into the local graveyard and immediately on my right I saw a most beautiful sunrise just coming up out of the low clouds. Streams of golden light poured across the graveyard catching the shiny headstones and for a few seconds it seemed like the graveyard was full of small twinkling lights. It was a pretty sight.
For some reason it reminded me of a journey I once made from East to West of Nigeria. I set off at 6.30am and by early evening I was within 2 hours of my destination, Ibadan. It was an intensely hot day and I had opened all four windows of the car to get as much movement of air as possible, even though it was hot air. I was on a dual carriage way, going quite fast and driving into the sun. Suddenly I heard a loud crack. The windscreen shattered into pieces and a shower of little lights came in all over me as the sun caught the broken glass. I pulled unto the grass verge and stopped, quite shaken. I knew there was no stone, and I didn’t know what happened. I got out and started trying to rid myself of the glass.
It was a busy road, and many cars flew by. Then, a car pulled in behind me and two young men got out. They immediately started getting all the glass out of the car. I was so grateful for that but more so for their concern and willingness to give as much help as they could. They explained that the break was likely caused by the intense heat. There was no place near to get a replacement and anyway I did not want to delay but I wondered how I could drive another 2 hours with no windscreen. They told me to close all windows in the car so there would be no through breeze and it would be bearable. I tried it and sure enough it was quite pleasant despite the odd flies etc. but I had to take a slower pace. Those two very generous young men drove behind me for a bit to make sure I was alright. I reached Ibadan safely, thank God, and with thanks to those men.
Were they not more bright lights in my life? Pope Francis once urged us “to ignite little lights in people’s hearts and be an inspiration in moments of darkness”. They did that for me. I do not even know their names but I will not forget them and pray that God will send someone to light their way in times of darkness.