An unexpected reunion for Bishop Hilary

Img_4014 Posted by David Gough on Tue, 05 Mar 2013 | 0 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to del.icio.us Post this to Facebook

I recently attended a meeting in Dublin to celebrate the launch of Kill O’ the Grange’s Partnership Plan with Yei Diocese in South Sudan. In what turned out to be a great example of God’s perfect timing, the parish was able to invite a special guest to the event – Bishop Hilary from Yei was their speaker for the evening!

Before the event began, as the room started to fill up, I overheard Bishop Hilary being very animated while talking in Arabic to some visitors.

Ben Mansuk now lives in Kilkenny but he and his friend Iwa first met the Bishop many years before he became Bishop of Yei. They were both students of the Bishops when he taught geography in a Secondary School in Khartoum, the capital of Sudan. When Ben and Iwa heard that their old geography teacher, who was now the Bishop of Yei, was coming to Ireland and was speaking near Dublin they were particularly keen to come and meet him.

“I was shocked and pleasantly surprised to walk into a meeting in Dublin and bump into not only some people from South Sudan, but also my former students. It certainly seems a world away from being the Bishop of Yei.” expressed Bishop Hilary.

Ben said he had also previously met Hilary in Juba when the now Bishop was working as a librarian. Ben was studying as a student at Juba University.

“It was great to see Hilary again and for me, my wife, my family and friends to meet the Bishop of Yei, my ex teacher”, declared a smiling Ben.

I first met Ben, Iwa and their friends at a friend’s house in Dublin. They also participated in the South Sudan Independence Celebration’s that Kill O’ the Grange Parish had hosted for the world’s newest country in 2011.

It truly is a small world when a teacher and his former students meet outside their home country and yet are able to pick up their relationship as if they had never been apart.

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