Symbol from: Faithsymbol.org
by James Paulin
What is peace? We readily acknowledge it is absence of war or armed conflict but is it merely a lull in aggressive action and the resulting defensive counter actions? Great jubilation accompanied the end of the first and second world wars. The euphoria didn’t last very long before war was on the horizon again and again. Wars are horrible in every sense and seemingly unavoidable as history reminds us. We all seek peace but some will only accept a peace on their personal terms.
Injustice, power, greed, poverty, prejudice, ignorance and malice all play roles as motives for violence. Is peace nothing more than an uneasy standoff or maintaining the status quo? Is it an oppression that threatens to quash any objections to the dominant ruling force? It seems obvious that global peace is unobtainable given the human condition and history as it has played out. There is however a possible avenue towards personal peace many have obtained that is undeniable.
Contrary to popular beliefs, peace has little to do with financial status. People have found peace despite unbearable circumstances from concentration camps to intensive care units and from broiling deserts to Artic wastelands. Many times inner peace has enabled a poverty stricken person to rise up to great accomplishment. Connecting to this source of well being takes a leap of faith into the arms of the “Prince of Peace”, God’s only Son. This abiding resource is rooted in trust that God is in control if you just follow Him. It doesn’t mean things will always be smooth or easy but it means you can count on Gods’ support and love. In the poverty that all of us share, our fragile existence, we have only one choice to make.
We are a community of laymen and laywomen who, with vowed Passionists, seek to share in the charism of St. Paul of the Cross through prayer, ongoing spiritual formation, and proclamation of the message of Christ Crucified.