Amazing Grace! Obama’s Eulogy for his Friend Rev Pinckney was Simply ‘Amazing’

Mangaluru: My best part of waking up in the morning is to have my Nescafe, and simultaneously watch CNN and CNN-IBN channels on the idiot box- and this morning the special coverage of US president Barack Obama delivering the eulogy for his long time friend Rev Clementa Pinckney was simply heart-warming. I am not sure how many of you might have watch Obama’s thoughtful and sentimental eulogy, but it did bring tears to my eyes, like many other viewers I hope. Imagine the World’s powerful leader delivering a eulogy and ending it with the solo “Amazing Grace”- I guess the bereaved family of Rev Pinckney will remember the moment for the rest of their lives. It was truly “Amazing”!

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Late Rev Clementa Pinckney -Pastor of Charleston’s Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church,
who was gunned down along with eight other church worshippers.

President Barack Obama delivered a touching eulogy, a rousing political speech and a thoughtful meditation on race in America when he traveled to Charleston, South Carolina on Friday to speak at the funeral of the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, who was gunned down last week by a racist terrorist during Bible study. But the President’s speech will be remembered for a moment at the end when he launched into a solo of “Amazing Grace,” that at first stunned the mourners and then brought them to their feet as they joined him in song.

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“As a nation, out of this terrible tragedy, God has visited grace upon us for he has allowed us to see where we’ve been blind,” Obama said. “He’s given us the chance, where we’ve been lost, to find our best selves.” The President’s remarks at times felt like a sermon, with organ chords backing him during some of the most impassioned passages. The mostly African-American crowd was, at the end of the eulogy, on its feet, clapping and cheering Obama as he named each victim of the church shooting and declaring each “had grace.”

The President, first lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, a bipartisan host of high-level members of Congress and Hillary Clinton all attended the memorial service at TD Arena in downtown Charleston. Last Wednesday, a 21-year-old man opened fire at a Bible study inside Charleston’s Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, killing nine. The shooter declared he was there to “kill black people,” and an online manifesto attributed to him contained white supremacist screeds.

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Obama, in his eulogy, said the killer likely assumed he “would deepen divisions that trace back to our nation’s original sin.” “But God works in mysterious ways,” Obama said. “God had different ideas. He didn’t know he was being used by God. The alleged killer could have never anticipated the way the families of the fallen would respond when they saw him in court in the midst of unspeakable grief, with words of forgiveness,” Obama said.

I end this column with thought-provoking lyrics from the song “Amazing Grace”-

Amazing grace, How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

‘Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved.
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come,
‘Tis grace has brought me safe thus far
And grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promised good to me
His word my hope secures;
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease
I shall possess within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.

When we’ve been there ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we’ve first begun.

Chorus:
Amazing grace, How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

3 Comments

  1. Yes, Indeed!! It was a great moment in history. As his second term is approaching an end, Obama seems to be more and more relaxed and genuine in his approach. This is the same Obama we saw during 2007 campaign. Somehow, the political attacks from opposition and calculations to win the second term election had forced him to act in ways different from his true personality. I’m glad to see him back with all the force and genuine intent to address real problems in our society.

    • With the fast approaching US Presidential Election in mind, and considering that it can be easier for any US resident irrespective of his ancestry can contest and win the election…..and with a former Indian immigrant Bobby Jindal also having thrown in his hat for the race, being a regular follower of the Mangalorean.com and very special admirer of one of its most intelligent and brilliant contributors…..I am now inclined to request the great Mr. Original R.Pai also to kindly contest the forthcoming election and I do believe he is certain to win and give much needed new leadership to the world like Kennedy or Clinton.

      I am sure all the fans of this celebrated columnist will unanimously support my proposal.

      LONG LIVE “PRESIDENT ORIGINAL R. PAI”

  2. Dear Alfie again touches a chord. Sensitive description of an insensitive hurtful act. Obama has exceptional qualities. Alfie has exceptional writing talent. Long Live Both…!!!!!

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