The journey of Alan Henning to Syria, travelling, with his Muslim friends, with aid to help those suffering in the midst of conflict shows the very best of humanity. His capture, detention and execution show the very worst of humanity. His life shows us all that humankind can be and his death shows us all that humankind must not be.
We stand in solidarity with his family in their anguish and grief. We stand up to all who seek to advance their cause by bullying, aggression or violence. In the face of such horror, the desire for revenge and retaliation is understandable, and, air strikes and boots on the ground may constrain the worse excesses but none of these will ultimately solve this problem.
People of all faiths and of no faith know there is another way. Alan, in his journey to Syria, has shown us the path of generosity. We honour his life not by getting even but re-doubling our efforts to be generous, to reach out to those in need, to be more loving, more caring. In the face of the worst traits of humanity, we most not stop demonstrating the very best of what it means to be human.