The Prince of Wales has commended a survivor of the Christchurch terrorist attack for his example of forgiveness, saying he is a “shining example to us all”.
The Telegraph has today printed Prince Charles’ Easter message, which focuses on the triumph of life over death and light over darkness.
“Already this year we have seen some terrible deeds of darkness, from young people being knifed on our streets, to the slaughter of men, women and children while they were worshipping God. There are times when it can feel as if the light has gone out of the world and darkness reigns. But Easter gives us hope,” the prince wrote.
He detailed how throughout his life he has been humbled to meet and listen to people who have suffered terrible personal tragedies, admiring the way they have turned their grief into action to help people.
He called for action on the “pervasive horror” of knife crime, now common in the United Kingdom, but also elaborated on the power of forgiveness in such circumstances.
“However, very often it is not the punishment that brings them to their senses and changes them, but rather the extraordinary power of the forgiveness from those they have hurt,” he said.
He referred to Farid Ahmed, who publicly forgave the shooter in last month’s terrorist attacks in Christchurch, as a "shining example to us all".
“Last month we saw another remarkable example of forgiveness following the utterly appalling attack on Muslims in Christchurch, New Zealand. Farid Ahmed, a senior leader of the mosque in Deans Avenue, publicly forgave the gunman who so cruelly murdered his wife, Husna, and 49 other members of the Muslim community there. 'I don’t hate him at all, not at all … I love him because he is human, he is a brother of mine,' he said."
The prince said he had been “moved and humbled” by the courage and dignity of Christians and those from other faiths he had met whom had been persecuted because of their beliefs.