Posted by Gamini Perera on March 19, 2007 at 08:45:16
Anglican Arch Bishop Kenneth Fernando lay dying in the Jayawardanapura hospital. For years he had faithfully served, blessed and advised the majority of Sri Lanka's "Buddhist" political leaders.
He motioned for his nurse to come near.
"Yes, Father?" said the nurse.
"I would really like to see Chandrika and Ranil before I die."
whispered the priest.
"I'll see what I can do, Father" replied the nurse.
The nurse telephoned the two people.
Chandrika and Ranil were delighted to visit the priest, as usual.
As they rushed to the hospital, Chandrika commented to Ranil:
"I don't know why uncle Kenneth wants to see us at his deathbed, but it will certainly help our images." Ranil couldn't help but agree.
When they arrived at the priest's room, the priest took Chandrika's hand in his right hand and Ranil's hand in his left. There was silence and a look of rare serenity on the old man's face.
Finally Chandrika spoke.
"Uncle, of all the people you could have chosen, why did you choose us to be with you as you near the end?"
The old priest slowly replied "I have always tried to pattern my life after our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."
Amen" said Chandrika.
"Amen" said Ranil
The old priest continued... "He died between two lying thieves. I would like to do the same."