Saturday, May 10, 2008

Catholics Working and Praying Together for Peace and Justice

So, it is May 11th, it has been one week of praying for peace. This has been good for me. I have learned so much about my fellow Christians who are not Catholic. I have learned about their long history and commitment to peacemaking. I have become familiar with some of their resources, resources we can all use.

However, this week started as a 25 year anniversary of the Peace Pastoral of the U.S. Conference of Bishops. I started by looking at Franciscans and like minded groups, including Pax Christi. The Peace Pastoral was not an ecumenical paper or a Franciscan paper, it is an American Catholic document. So I will end looking at only a few of the other Catholic organizations dedicated to peace and social justice. It is important to remember that they are only a few.

The Jesuits have a long history of working for social justice. It is not surprising that their efforts are both in action and academic. The Dominicans, the peers of the Franciscans in the development of universities, are also our peers in working for peace. The Carmelites provide another and different model of how to work for the world without being in the world.

A much older Order than the Franciscan, the Augustinians have a lot to teach all of us in terms of putting words to action and making that action for peace. The Benedictines are also an older Order that has worked for peace diligently and has a lot to offer all of us.

Last year I attended the Catholic Collegium This was a Collegium on integrating catholic identity and intellectual identify on campus. It was wonderful, powerful and demanding. It was started by the Holy Cross Orders, another Order dedicated to working for peace and social justice.

The list of Orders goes on and one. The Catholic organizations focusing on social justice and peace go on and on. Catholics for Peace and Justice are brothers and sisters from around the world doing what we are called to do. Now we need to make sure we are doing that work with whoever else is interested in peace. Because our mandate is simple, to love.

So, let us pray and work, let us ALL pray and work, for PEACE

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