|James Foley - from www.sedgemore.com|
An article written by journalist James Foley for the magazine of his alma mater, Marquette University, brings some measure of comfort as we consider his horrific demise: he was a man of prayer. After being freed from his first kidnapping in Libya in 2011, he described how he tried to connect with his family through prayer: “I began to pray the rosary. It was what my mother and grandmother would have prayed. I said 10 Hail Marys between each Our Father. It took a long time, almost an hour to count 100 Hail Marys off on my knuckles. And it helped to keep my mind focused.”
The final sentence in the ‘Hail Mary’ is: “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.”
Despite that first kidnapping, Foley decided he had to return to the Middle-East to report on the suffering of the Syrian people. It was there, in 2012, that he was captured by IS. His cellmate, a French journalist Nicolas Henin said in a BBC interview that although one develops survival instincts in prison where you grab at everything, “James was the opposite – he would share everything. If you were cold, he would share his blanket, if you were hungry, he would share his ration.”
James Foley lived the life of a true Christian and died a martyr for the truth. Serious journalists know that their career is more than a profession – it is a vocation. Here in Jamaica, our journalists have faced some terrifying moments (yours truly included), but we soldier on in the name of truth.
Foley’s death has revealed to the world the depth of evil that is IS – now the international community must act not only to avenge his sad loss, but also to bring justice to the good people of the region who have been living under a reign of terror.
Dr Martin Luther King Jr said, “Undeserved suffering is redemptive.” The only way we can try to understand how such a good person could have had such an unspeakable death, is to consider him a holocaust – a sacrifice for some greater good.