PEACE BY PEACE
JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2016

Photo caption
Holy Door, Basilica of St John Lateran [Jubilee of Mercy website]
We can't let ourselves be overcome by weariness. No form of sadness is allowed, even if we would have reason to, because of the many worries and multiple forms of violence which wound our humanity.

– Pope Francis, 13 December 2015, opening the Holy Door in the Basilica of St John Lateran.


Pope Francis opens the Holy Door, St Peter’s Basilica, 8 December 2015


Dorothy Day(1897 – 1980)

What are we trying to do? We are trying to get to heaven, all of us. We are trying to lead a good life. We are trying to talk about, and write about, the Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes, and the social principles of the church. It is most astounding – the things that happen when you start trying to live this way.

Dorothy Day, All the Way to Heaven: the Selected Letters of Dorothy Day

Pope Francis on Dorothy Day: In these times when social concerns are so important, I cannot fail to mention the Servant of God Dorothy Day, who founded the Catholic Worker Movement. Her social activism, her passion for justice and for the cause of the oppressed, were inspired by the Gospel, her faith, and the example of the saints.

 


Thomas Merton (Fr Louis OCSO)

All men seek peace first of all with themselves. That is necessary, because we do not naturally find rest even in our own being. We have to learn to commune with ourselves before we can communicate with other men and with God. A man who is not at peace with himself necessarily projects his interior fighting into the society of those he lives with, and spreads a contagion of conflict all around him.

– Thomas Merton, No Man is an Island

Pope Francis on Thomas Merton: A century ago, at the beginning of the Great War, which Pope Benedict XV termed a ‘pointless slaughter’, another notable American was born: the Cistercian monk Thomas Merton. He remains a source of spiritual inspiration and a guide for many people. In his autobiography he wrote: ‘I came into the world. Free by nature, in the image of God, I was nevertheless the prisoner of my own violence and my own selfishness, in the image of the world into which I was born. That world was the picture of Hell, full of men like myself, loving God, and yet hating him; born to love him, living instead in fear of hopeless self-contradictory hungers’. Merton was above all a man of prayer, a thinker who challenged the certitudes of his time and opened new horizons for souls and for the Church. He was also a man of dialogue, a promoter of peace between peoples and religions.

Photo: Christian Community Bible (use jpg)
I have chosen the way of truth; I have set my heart upon your laws. Since I cling to your decrees, O Lord, save me from disgrace. I will run in the way of your commands, for you have freed my heart.

– Psalm 119:30-32 (Christian Community Bible)


St Basil the Great [Wikipedia]

When someone strips another of his clothes, he is called a thief. Should not someone who has the power to clothe the naked but does not do so be called the same? The bread in your larder belongs to the hungry. The cloak in your wardrobe belongs to the naked. The shoes you allow to rot belong to the barefoot. The money in your vaults belongs to the destitute. You do injustice to everyone who you could help but do not.

St Basil the Great (329 or 330 – 379)


Dietrich Bonhoeffer in 1939 [Wikipedia]

Christianity means community through Jesus Christ and in Jesus Christ. No Christian community is more or less than this. Whether it be a brief, single encounter or the daily fellowship of years, Christian community is only this. We belong to one another only through and in Jesus Christ.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1909 – 1945)