‘We’re all Fishermen Now’

6a010535dbab09970c01156e53958a970c-320wiI love this story below that Obama told at Notre Dame yesterday about Fr. Hesburgh creating “common ground” among members of Eisenhower’s Civil Rights Commission. What held them together was fishing.

The way Obama turns the image at the end is phenomenal and not without some Christian resonance. Lovely.

And years later, President Eisenhower asked Father Ted how on Earth he was able to broker an agreement between men of such different backgrounds and beliefs. And Father Ted simply said that during their first dinner in Wisconsin, they discovered they were all fishermen. (Laughter.) And so he quickly readied a boat for a twilight trip out on the lake. They fished, and they talked, and they changed the course of history.

I will not pretend that the challenges we face will be easy, or that the answers will come quickly, or that all our differences and divisions will fade happily away — because life is not that simple. It never has been.

But as you leave here today, remember the lessons of Cardinal Bernardin, of Father Hesburgh, of movements for change both large and small. Remember that each of us, endowed with the dignity possessed by all children of God, has the grace to recognize ourselves in one another; to understand that we all seek the same love of family, the same fulfillment of a life well lived. Remember that in the end, in some way we are all fishermen.

Read the full transcript here.

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