Catholic Social Teaching condemns that arms trade and supports those who refuse to take up arms on grounds of conscience. This theme goes much deeper than simply condemnation of conflict; it looks towards the Kingdom of God and tries to discern how we create a profound and lasting peace in our world, a peace that we experience and learn about from a relationship with God.
The Hebrew word for Peace is shalom, but shalom can also be translated in English as fullness or completeness. In many ways this explains the theme of Peace much better because it isn’t just an absence of war or conflict that constitutes peace in the eyes of Catholic Social Teaching, but a complete trust and fraternity between people.
Pacifism hasn’t always been the approach taken towards resolving conflict within Catholic Social Teaching, but it is however growing in influence. It is still the case that certain military actions are considered permissible and even necessary for the protection of the innocent. In reality, however, these are very uncommon and most if not all conflicts that exist around the world don’t meet the necessary standards to be considered justified within Catholic Social Teaching.
Read more about Peace and Reconciliation here
Peace and Reconciliation Quotes
"In the past year, many of our brothers and sisters have continued to endure the destructive experience of war, which constitutes a grave and deep wound inflicted on fraternity. Many conflicts are taking place amid general indifference. To all those who live in lands where weapons impose terror and destruction, I assure you of my personal closeness and that of the whole Church, whose mission is to bring Christ’s love to the defenceless victims of forgotten wars through her prayers for peace, her service to the wounded, the starving, refugees, the displaced and all those who live in fear. The Church also speaks out in order to make leaders hear the cry of pain of the suffering and to put an end to every form of hostility, abuse and the violation of fundamental human rights."
"Whatever house you enter, first say 'peace to this house!'"
“Never war! Never war! I think especially about those children who had the hope of a future, dignified life, but had it taken away. Dead children, wounded children. Mutilated children. Orphaned children. Children who play with toys made out of the remains of weapons. Children who cannot smile anymore. Stop. Please. I beg you with all my heart it is time to stop. Stop please.”
Pope Francis, Angelus 27th July 2014
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