“The drug trade is a ruthless trade in ruining lives, a callous trade in death”, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin said. He was speaking at the 18th Service of Commemoration and Hope in the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes, Sean McDermott Street, Dublin on Wednesday 1 February.
Archbishop Martin said, “It is a ruthless and cynical and diabolic trade which has no respect for any life. It thrives on destroying the lives of the weakest, whether of those who fall into abuse or those who they trap into becoming agents of their despicable trade.”
The multi-denominational service is held annually in remembrance of those who have lost their lives but it also offers hope to families struggling with addiction or in recovery.
Addressing the families, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin spoke about how much he enjoys celebrating the Sacrament of Confirmation. He said, “At Confirmation you see young boys and girls at their best. Their smiles portray how proud they are of themselves and of their families and of their school. It is wonderful to see real hope in their faces.”
Archbishop Martin said that nothing makes him so sad and so angry as “to see the hope of a young boy and girl robbed and be slowly destroyed through them falling victim to substance abuse. Their youthful smile becomes replaced by a despairing stare. Their hope is replaced by a tragic trap which despite all their efforts they find it harder and harder to break out of without a helping community.”
Archbishop Martin went on to say, “We are here to show any young person who becomes trapped in addiction that there still is hope as we let them know that there is a helping hand willing to pick them up – no matter how many times they fall – and help them along the difficult path to recovery.”
Addressing those involved in the drugs trade, Archbishop Martin said, “Those who trade in death bring that condemnation on themselves rendering themselves despicable.”
Archbishop Martin concluded with words of hope. He said, “We gather to speak words of hope. We remember those who have died. They went through hard times but their loved ones remember them for the goodness that always remained there hidden within their troubled lives.
“We speak words of hope and support to the young people of this community who are our hope and we commit ourselves to carry them in our hearts and our helping hands that they can realise their hopes and go through life with those smiles of hope.”
The Annual Service of Commemoration and Hope was organised by the National Family Support Network in Dublin’s North Inner City.