Monday, January 16, 2006

In truth, peace

Those are the words that Pope Benedict XVI chose as the them for World Day of Peace at the start of this year.

On the website of the Vatican, you can read his message, which spells out his thoughts on both the nature of peace and our path to attaining it.

Before reading it, I'd never really had it click in my mind that peace meant anything more than the absence of war, but Benedict explains it as a much more vast concept. He quotes Pope John Paul II: " 'the fruit of an order which has been planted in human society by its divine Founder', an order 'which must be brought about by humanity in its thirst for ever more perfect justice.' "

Peace is a universal desire, Benedict writes, that is universally damaged and pulled away from us through lies and the distortion of reality -- and as such he ties the importance of truth to the achievement of peace. For, he writes, "wherever and whenever men and women are enlightened by the splendour of truth, they naturally set out on the path of peace."

And it is in Christ, the Prince of Peace, that we find Truth incarnate. "The power of his grace makes it possible to live ''in'' and ''by'' truth, since he alone is completely true and faithful. Jesus is the truth which gives us peace."

Anyone interested in more of the pope's reflections on peace should also definitely check out his address to the diplomatic corps accredited to the Holy See, which occured on a week ago.

No comments: