From apartheid to how boring he felt fishing was - these are some of Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s most memorable quotes (image: AFP/Getty Images)
Alongside Nelson Mandela, the Christian leader was a vocal critic of racial segregation in his country and the governments that enforced it.
He also spoke out on a wide range of other issues in his lifetime, including homophobia, human rights abuses around the world and even his disdain for fishing.
Here’s a list of some of the best quotes to remember Archbishop Tutu by.
"I am not interested in picking up crumbs of compassion thrown from the table of someone who considers himself my master. I want the full menu of human rights."
“How could you have a soccer team if all were goalkeepers? How would it be an orchestra if all were French horns?”
“I wish I could shut up, but I can’t, and I won’t.”
“When the missionaries came to Africa, they had the Bible and we had the land. They said: ‘Let us pray.’ We closed our eyes. When we opened them, we had the Bible and they had the land.”
“People are not born hating each other and wishing to cause harm. It is a learned condition.”
"I would not worship a God who is homophobic and that is how deeply I feel about this. I would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven. No, I would say sorry, I mean I would much rather go to the other place. I am as passionate about this campaign as I ever was about apartheid."
On the Israel-Palestine conflict
“I have been to the Occupied Palestinian Territory and I have witnessed the racially segregated roads and housing that reminded me so much of the conditions we experienced in South Africa under the racist system of apartheid.”
"If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality."
"Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness."
“Don’t raise your voice, improve your argument.”
“Language is very powerful. Language does not just describe reality, language creates the reality it describes.”
"We may be surprised at the people we find in heaven. God has a soft spot for sinners. His standards are quite low."
“Religion is like a knife: you can either use it to cut bread, or stick in someone’s back.”
“Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime. Teach a man to cycle and he will realize fishing is stupid and boring.”
“We are made for loving. If we don’t love, we will be like plants without water.”
“A person is a person through other persons; you can’t be human in isolation; you are human only in relationships.”
“There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out of the river. We need to go upstream and find out why they’re falling in.”
“It is true that when we harm others, we harm ourselves; but it is just as true that when we help others, we also help ourselves.”
“Renewing a relationship is a creative act. We make a new relationship. It is possible to build a new relationship regardless of the realities of the old relationship.”
“When your dreams turn to dust, vacuum.”
A message from the editor:
Thank you for reading. NationalWorld is a new national news brand, produced by a team of journalists, editors, video producers and designers who live and work across the UK. Find out more about who’s who in the team, and our editorial values. We want to start a community among our readers, so please follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and keep the conversation going. You can also sign up to our email newsletters and get a curated selection of our best reads to your inbox every day.