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RECONCILIATION: CHANCING ONE’S ARM

A. The oldest Christian site in Ireland is said to be St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin. (Slide Of St Patrick’s)

1. It is a beautiful edifice, but it also has a interesting piece of history involving one of its doors– it is known as the "Door of Reconciliation."

2. There’s a rectangular hole hacked out of its center.

a. In 1492, two prominent Irish families, the Ormonds and Kildares, were in the midst of a bitter feud.

b. As the feud grew and turned into an all out fight, the Earl of Ormand was besieged by the Earl of Kildare.

c. The Earl of Ormand and his family and followers took refuge in the chapter house of St. Patrick’s cathedral and bolted themselves in.

3. However, as the siege wore on, the Earl of Kildare concluded the feuding was foolish.

a. Here were two families worshiping the same God, in the same church, living in the same country, trying to kill each other.

b. So Kildare called out to the Earl of Ormand and pledged that he would not seek revenge or indulge in villainy — he wanted the Ormands to come out and the feud to be over.

c. But the Earl of Ormand was convinced that it was a scheme full of treachery and refused to come out of the cathedral.

d. So Kildare grabbed his spear, chopped a hole in the door with it, and thrust his hand through.

4. There was a tense...

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