Notre Dame’s PTE students were awed by a virtual visit from Mr. and Mrs. Mizen, who spoke of their decision to forgive the boy who murdered their 16-year old son.
Every year, the College’s Philosophy, Theology and Ethics (PTE) Department hosts a number of speakers, who share their life and work experiences with our students. On June 16, Barry and Margaret Mizen joined us remotely through Teams, and their live presentation was recorded, then shown to the rest of our lower sixth students throughout the following week. The Mizens talked about the murder of their son Jimmy, the day after his 16th birthday, and their forgiveness of the boy who killed him.
As a result of Jimmy’s death, the Mizens set up the Mizen Foundation, which aims to “support young people across the UK by challenging them to be the change-makers & peace-makers in their local communities. We promote the good in young people by showcasing their positive actions within these communities”. You can read more about the foundation here.
Our students were deeply moved by the Mizen’s talk, one saying, “I had walked into PTE expecting another cheery life lesson and was dumbfounded to have my world view challenged in such a profound way in the space of just one hour. As a non-religious person, I felt my mind had been opened to the importance of forgiveness. I would like to express gratitude to the Mizens for sharing their message of forgiveness, peace and hope.”
Our students spent subsequent PTE lessons designing and writing cards for the Mizens. When Mrs. Margaret Mizen received 13 A4 envelopes bursting with cards, letters and messages (see photo above), she emailed our Director of Catholic Life Mrs. Catherine Herring to say, “What a wonderful surprise to receive these wonderful cards and letters. We are so very grateful to all the students who clearly listened to what we were saying.”
We’d like to thank the Mizens for taking the time to speak to our students.