Nostalgia is a legacy, a legacy of the details; the thread of green on the trees, the sway of the clouds over the tired city, the resting dusty shoes after a long journey, the creaking doors of the destroyed buildings tolling in the cracks of our memory.
A legacy! what is a legacy? Fairouz when she sings, Frans, when he prays and, rejoices; hailing his words upon all visitors: Go forward, move further forward. A legacy is a song of peace/ Salam. Salam to all Syrians upon the earth.
With Frans van der Lugt the frontiers of west and east got collapsed. The legacy is to keep the spirit, to roam the world, detaching our anguished souls, dispatching Salam among other souls.
The legacy is to keep strong, to stare into the horizon, to pierce the darkness within and release the ever-precious life, yes life, deep within.
*Frans van der Lugt is a Dutch Jesuit monk migrated to Syria in 1966 to flourish mutual dialogue between Moslems and Christians. In the days of the bitter siege, he insisted on staying in his monastery in the heart of Homs city, turning it to the only refuge to both Moslems and Christians of the neighbourhood. By the truce announcement in 2014, an armed masked fighter approached him and shot him dead in the head. Since then, Frans has been considered as a Syrian martyr, a brave man of peace whose followers and friends are still enhanced by his sacrifice, teachings, books and the legacy he left behind. To the people who knew him: Frans is a Syrian more than any other Syrian, a Moslem more than any Moslem, a human more than all humans. Knowing him a long time ago, since childhood, allows me the chance to honour him even if in these few lines.