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Monday, October 24, 2016
Chaplain urges teenagers to give up knives
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Godwin Lawson - promising sportsman
The Jesuit Chaplain of St  Ignatius College in Enfield  has made a passionate plea to teenagers to surrender  their knives. Father Tim Byron SJ made the appeal at the funeral of former student, Godwin Lawson, who was the victim of a  stabbing in Stamford Hill in March. He was attacked along with two friends.
Preaching at the Requiem Mass at St Ignatius Church, Stamford Hill, Fr Tim said a decision to reject knives would be a far more fitting tribute to the 17-year-old than flowers on the pavement or messages on a social networking site. “There will be people  today here in church who have carried knives or who are thinking of carrying a knife,” he said. “I say to you now – in the name of the Lord – Stop!  If you really want to honour the name of Godwin: stop carrying knives!”
Fr Tim rejected the argument that knives provided protection, telling the congregation: “You are ten times more likely to be stabbed if you carry a knife – what type of protection is that?   Many of those stabbed are stabbed with their own knives – they are turned against them – so it is not protection. So I tell you again – Stop!”
On leaving St Ignatius College, Godwin attended the Oxford United Football and Education Academy, and was hailed as a promising sportsman. “He was a normal human being like  all of us here today – he made mistakes – like we all do,” said Fr Tim. “But he showed us at St Ignatius College how hard he was prepared to work to make his dream come true.  That dream was cruelly taken away from him.”
The Jesuit Chaplain also urged young people to reject friends who carry knives and to stop hanging round with them. “Let us all commit ourselves to becoming part of the solution. And in memory of Godwin Lawson, let us pray for more faith and courage – and that we may help each other in making our streets safer.”

Source: Jesuit Communications Office/OUFEA

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Tags: , Father Tim Byron SJ, Godwin Lawson, Oxford United Football and Education Academy, St Ignatius College in Enfield

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