Nelson Mandelaby Representative Sanford D. Bishop Jr.
Posted on 2013-12-12
BISHOP of Georgia. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor a man who
has inspired me and millions of people across the globe. He died last
week at the age of 95, but lived a full life defined by a dedication to
serve others and a simple, but all important, insistence that all
citizens be treated with dignity and respect.
Serving as the first black president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela fought and sacrificed for civil rights in his home country. To Nelson Mandela, all were equal--peace and justice were to be shared among all races, religions, and nationalities. Beyond words, Mandela lived a life of leadership by example. His long and courageous opposition to South Africa's long and violent apartheid and relentless pursuit of freedom and justice was a profound example of moral leadership that will long be remembered.
A man not deterred or discouraged from his goals, Nelson Mandela was determined and unwavering in his fight for liberty. Beyond death, his life continues to serve as a daily inspiration for my public service, and I believe all of us can learn from Mandela's examples in forgiveness, hope, and sacrifice. South Africa and the world are better for the example of his life--his work laid the foundations for a bright future in South Africa and his vision of peace has been since shared around the globe.
His faith in God and commitment to the principles of freedom and justice for all are reflected in his favorite scripture from the Apostle Paul found in the 8th Chapter of Romans; `Neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.' He would not be separated from his principles of justice for all, no matter the cost.
Mr. Speaker, today I ask my colleagues to join me and the people of South Africa in paying tribute to Mr. Nelson Mandela and his exceptional legacy as a world leader. May his family and all of the lives he touched be consoled and comforted by their faith in the Lord, along with the assurance that the courage of Nelson Mandela will not soon be forgotten.