My friend Andrew King died on Thursday. I was aware when we had lunch in October last year that it was he last time we would do so. He has been "ill" for over a decade, though he would never describe himself as 'ill'. With a particularly nasty form of leukemia he has lived on and on with various advances in treatment...some of it fairly rugged.
Andrew was a whistle blower, though again he would never call himself such. He was simply just a bloke who got on with his job and tried to do the right thing. Very perceptive, always gentle, ever-outraged by injustice...against aboriginal people, palestinians, and latterly those who had been abused by the Church.
I think he saw that the sexual and other forms of abuse that people had received at the hands of apparent servants of the Church, both lay and clerical, paled into insignificance when compared with the abuse that those who sort to report such heinous offences were put through.
Put through by indifference, apathy, the game playing of bishops of their lackeys...men who thought they were so bloody pastoral that they failed to see that they were the problem and not the solution!
Amidst all this Andrew was a curious husband, father, and friend. Ever gentle, always true. I shall miss him. We all shall miss him.