Midwest Catholic Worker retreat ends in protest, one arrest at Notre Dame

posted by Mike on March 26th, 2007

South Bend (Indiana) Tribune:

A few dozen members of the Catholic Worker movement staged a protest in front of the University of Notre Dame’s administration building today, saying the university’s ROTC program contradicts Catholic teaching.

“It saddens us that one of the preeminent universities is training warriors,” said the Rev. Ben Jimenez, a Catholic priest from Cleveland.

An appropriate quotation from the pope (Feb 18, 2007):

Why does Jesus ask us to love our very enemies, that is, ask a love that exceeds human capacities? What is certain is that Christ’s proposal is realistic, because it takes into account that in the world there is too much violence, too much injustice, and that this situation cannot be overcome without positing more love, more kindness. This “more” comes from God: It is his mercy that has become flesh in Jesus and that alone can redress the balance of the world from evil to good, beginning from that small and decisive “world” which is man’s heart.

This page of the Gospel is rightly considered the “magna carta” of Christian nonviolence; it does not consist in surrendering to evil — as claims a false interpretation of “turn the other cheek” (Luke 6:29) — but in responding to evil with good. (Romans 12:17-21), and thus breaking the chain of injustice. It is thus understood that nonviolence, for Christians, is not mere tactical behavior but a person’s way of being, the attitude of one who is convinced of God’s love and power, who is not afraid to confront evil with the weapons of love and truth alone. Loving the enemy is the nucleus of the “Christian revolution,” a revolution not based on strategies of economic, political or media power. The revolution of love, a love that does not base itself definitively in human resources, but in the gift of God, that is obtained only and unreservedly in his merciful goodness. Herein lies the novelty of the Gospel, which changes the world without making noise. Herein lies the heroism of the “little ones,” who believe in the love of God and spread it even at the cost of life.

Emphasis added.

See also: Father Michael Bafaro’s address to the Worcester March 24 antiwar rally.

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