THE HEROISM OF TOBY LYNCHPIN
Every workday morning Toby Lynchpin came out of his house at the top of
Street, turned right ,and walked through the park
to catch his bus. In the evening, coming home a little later than necessary and
staying on the bus a couple more stops, he got off at the bottom of his road
and walked up to his house .This was usually about 6o’clock and the street was
quiet .Before going to bed he would generally pray and often he would cry .This
routine had carried on all his adult life.
Shortly before he was due to retire he went to see his priest to make a difficult confession as he had a premonition that he would soon die.
He told Father John that he had put off this confession day after day for thirty years . He spoke of the intensity of his temptations which made him feel at times that he was going mad, but he did not say what they were .Father John did much coaxing as Toby circumnavigated the heart of the matter and eventually his secret came out; he was plagued by overwhelming sexual temptations towards children .The sense of his own foulness was compounded by his desire to follow Jesus.
Father John pressed Toby for more details wondering what he’d done and if he could bear to hear the answer .Toby explained that he’d never given in to his temptations for fear of destroying innocent lives and how ,in seeking to avoid difficult situations his life had been one of unrelenting loneliness.Father John knew he was telling the truth, he prayed with Toby bid him go in peace and promised to remember him in his prayers .A great weight was lifted from Toby that day and although he was not altogether convinced ,he did not cry that night, but Father John did.
One morning a few weeks later Toby was walking through the park when he felt something hit him in the chest .The park seemed very strange and he was puzzled by the sound of singing, but when a boy and girl took his hands and led him forward it seemed perfectly natural ,he’d almost expected it , and for the first time in his life he experienced carefree joy. As he sensed the brilliant light coming from the figure at the top of the hill he paused ,then quickened his step. He had wept and trembled before this presence countless times but now he saw him, and he ran to greet him.