More from and about
Desmond Tutu
(biographical info at bottom of page)

  

Do your little bit of good where you are; it's those little
bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.

   

We get most upset with those we love because they are close to us and we know that they are aware of our weaknesses. . . If only we could learn to live with our inadequacies, our frailties, our vulnerabilities, we would not need to try so hard to push away those who really know us.

      
My father always used to say, "Don't raise your voice. Improve your argument." Good sense does not always lie with the loudest shouters, nor can we say that a large, unruly crowd is always the best arbiter of what is right.
  
Forgiving and being reconciled to our enemies or our loved ones are not about pretending that things are other than they are. It is not about patting one another on the back and turning a blind eye to the wrong. True reconciliation exposes the awfulness, the abuse, the hurt, the truth. It could even sometimes make things worse. It is a risky undertaking but in the end it is worthwhile, because in the end only an honest confrontation with reality can bring real healing. Superficial reconciliation can bring only superficial healing.
   

We were made to enjoy music, to enjoy beautiful sunsets, to enjoy looking at the billows of the sea and to be thrilled with a rose that is bedecked with dew… Human beings are actually created for the transcendent, for the sublime, for the beautiful, for the truthful... and all of us are given the task of trying to make this world a little more hospitable to these beautiful things.
  
  
When we see others as the enemy, we risk becoming what we hate. When we oppress others, we end up oppressing ourselves. All of our humanity is dependent upon recognizing the humanity in others.

     

We are made for goodness. We are made for love. We are made for
friendliness. We are made for togetherness. We are made for all of the
beautiful things that you and I know. We are made to tell the world that
there are no outsiders. All are welcome: black, white, red, yellow, rich,
poor, educated, not educated, male, female, gay, straight, all, all, all.
We all belong to this family, this human family, God's family.

   

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Like when you sit in front of a fire in winter — you are just there in front
of the fire. You don't have to be smart or anything. The fire warms you.

   

Out of the cacophony of random suffering and chaos that can mark
human life, the life artist sees or creates a symphony of meaning
and order. A life of wholeness does not depend on what we
experience. Wholeness depends on how we experience our lives.

   

We must be ready to learn from one another, not claiming that we alone
possess all truth and that somehow we have a corner on God.

  

Our maturity will be judged by how well we are able to agree to
disagree and yet continue to love one another, to care for one another,
and cherish one another and seek the greater good of the other.

   
    
Bishop Desmond Tutu was born in 1931 in Klerksdorp, Transvaal. His father was a teacher, and he himself was educated at Johannesburg Bantu High School. After leaving school he trained first as a teacher at Pretoria Bantu Normal College and in 1954 he graduated from the University of South Africa. After three years as a high school teacher he began to study theology, being ordained as a priest in 1960. The years 1962-66 were devoted to further theological study in England leading up to a Master of Theology. From 1967 to 1972 he taught theology in South Africa before returning to England for three years as the assistant director of a theological institute in London. In 1975 he was appointed Dean of St. Mary's Cathedral in Johannesburg, the first black to hold that position. From 1976 to 1978 he was Bishop of Lesotho, and in 1978 became the first black General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches. Tutu is an honorary doctor of a number of leading universities in the USA, Britain and Germany.

Desmond Tutu has formulated his objective as "a democratic and just society without racial divisions", and has set forward the following points as minimum demands:

1. equal civil rights for all
2. the abolition of South Africa's passport laws
3. a common system of education
4. the cessation of forced deportation from South Africa to the so-called "homelands"

The South African Council of Churches is a contact organization for the churches of South Africa and functions as a national committee for the World Council of Churches. The Boer churches have disassociated themselves from the organization as a result of the unambiguous stand it has made against apartheid. Around 80 percent of its members are black, and they now dominate the leading positions.

from nobelprize.org
  

  

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