From the Foreword: ‘It is rare among the protestant community in Ireland to find an exploration of the ethical problems of our history. It is much more comfortable, either to adopt a posture of defiance, or, where events have made that impossible, a discreet silence, as if nothing that required explanation or expiation had happened.
‘Nevertheless, a small evangelical group, inspired by the ideals of Moral Re-Armament, from both North and South, led by the late Dr. George Dallas, a Presbyterian, who gave evidence to the New Ireland Forum, did try to come to grips with the moral legacy of history.
'Roderick Evans’ Memoir is an addition to a small body of literature on the movement, which may come to a greater significance in the future. It takes a lot of courage and a sense of Christian duty to look at uncomfortable questions, which most people would rather ignore or pass over.
'History will highlight the special importance of Clonard Monastery in the coming of peace to Ireland. The Memoir describes the individuals involved, and the reflective exercises that took place at an awful time, when many lives were being lost in cruel circumstances.
'This is an account by one witness of what Christian people can do in such a situation, and even with the coming of peace many of the underlying moral problems still await further analysis and resolution.'
Martin Mansergh, 21st March 2002
Martin George Southcote Mansergh is an Irish former Fianna Fáil politician who served as Minister of State at the Department of Finance and Minister of State for the Arts from 2008 to 2011. He served as a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Tipperary South constituency from 2007 to 2011. He was a Senator for the Agricultural Panel from 2002 to 2007. He played a leading role in formulating Fianna Fáil policy on Northern Ireland.