Deidre Brock MP

Member of Parliament for Edinburgh North and Leith

Speech: Edinburgh Gurdwara

You and I and all of our neighbours, whether they live next door or the other side of the world, we have to look out for each other and care for each other and treat each other with dignity and respect.
We have to create harmony in the midst of diversity, compassion in the face of fear, generosity in place of greed and civility in the face of anger.

Deidre Brock MP

You know, I sometimes get a bit lost finding my way around Westminster – I may have been working there for a couple of years but it's still a really weird place and it's easy to lose your bearings.

I got lost on Monday and needed some help and, fortunately, there was a helpful policeman nearby who took me to where I should have been.

His name was Keith Palmer and two days later he was murdered while he was doing his job – a man drove a car along the pavement, killing and injuring people who were just going about their day, before he attacked those guarding the entrance to the Houses of Parliament.

We live in troubled times with people seeking to drive divisions through communities and we must resist that; we have to extend the hand of friendship, even to those who would wish us harm.

We must embrace the concept, which I think Guru Nanak taught, of a kinship of all so that peace can thrive.

Service to each other and to society, and to the whole of humanity is the essence of peace – it takes courage and sacrifice but the fruit of that crop is worth every part of that sacrifice and we have seen the horrible costs of taking the other path.

So I am glad to be here in this week of all weeks, comforted by the knowledge that there are people of good faith and great spirit active here, making a contribution to neighbours' wellbeing and building a better society.

I'm humbled to be allowed to share this celebration with you and happy to be able to renew our friendship and look to a happy and peaceful future.

Over four decades the Gurdwara has grown and adapted and shaped itself and its members around the changing faces of Edinburgh and Leith and it has helped shape those changing faces of the two cities as well.

The work done to value others in the community is so important that I don't think it can be overstated; the great humanity involved in feeding neighbours and strangers and treating them as equals in the Langar lifts up the whole community.

While this world is becoming a more frightening place for far too many people and the governments of too many nations seem to care too little about the people they should be serving, it is more important than ever that we look out for one another.

You and I and all of our neighbours, whether they live next door or the other side of the world, we have to look out for each other and care for each other and treat each other with dignity and respect.

We have to create harmony in the midst of diversity, compassion in the face of fear, generosity in place of greed and civility in the face of anger.

We have to remember, and to demonstrate our understanding of the fact that we may have different religions, different nations, different communities, we may live up[ mountains or on the plains, be different colours, have different cultures, eat different foods, believe different things, find different comforts and stresses.

But we are all one people, one human race, living on one world with one sun and one moon.

We are, first and foremost, people and that is the highest quality we can have.

I want to thank the Gurdwara for four decades of contribution to that and to the communities of Edinburgh and Leith and I hope we can look forward to many, many more years of working together.

No way to run a country, Theresa
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Tuesday, 14 August 2018

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