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Arkansas Catholic
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April 14, 1991     Arkansas Catholic
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April 14, 1991

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ARKANSAS CA1TtOLIC April 14, | 991 PAGE 3 h tt tt e 11 '1 1,' ie J~ VI X E e h h, i :1 1( r~ h It K O ff P J 9 r t I ;it :Is W r0 g- I1 ik C C ff tinued to speak out against the war. Although War had on Christians throughout the Middle ~ff~x[~]~(~ I]i3[~L~x(~[~ his statements made headlines throughout East. There are several million Christians living Europe and much of the rest of the world, they in the Middle East, many of them Catholics. In were virtually ignored blt both television and Iraq alone there are some 500,000 Catholics. The lV,~I1 I[~uffm,~ newspapers in the United States. war endangered these Christians because they And now that the war is over and the U~S. live in the Arab world where many saw the war Eom and its allies have won an overwhelming victory, as Christians attacking Moslems. the moment the Guff War first many who supported the war are saying to those 'The majority of Arab peoples are convinced W " became a possibility Pope John Paul 1I has used ho opposed n, The war was a huge success, that they were not viewed as human beings in every opportunity, ~ We were right and you were wrong. Admit it." this conflict," says Archbishop Henri Tessier of Public or private, to ~ In most eases these remarks are directed at Algiers. Many Arabic people, he said, believe express his strong ~ political opponents, but they apply even more that in the eyes of the Western powers "the OPposition to it. directly to Pope John Paul, who continued to value of an Arab lifewas not the same as that of Although he oppose the war even after many of its early a European." COndemned the ~~ :~ opponents had either switched sides or become Should the Pope have ignored the plight of Iraqi invasion of Ku- B~I: :/ silent. - Middle Eastern Christians? ~vait as "a brutal vio- ~~~i~ Was the Pope wrong in opposing the war?* The war strengthened those who favor. ....... : lation of interna- ~f"~*q There are at least four major reasons why his ~" ..: ~" . ,~:~;~.~ laOaal law and ofthe continued position to the Gulf War makessense The Pol)e'slob" Is" to speak on ...... raoral law," he nev- ~ -- " ~ i .,~lr~l ertheless believea from a Catholic perspective: Winning a war doesn't automatically make behalf of all people. % Iraq would be "an adventure x~thout return" to attack Iraq involved major moral questions. a dangerous risk which would only make things Should Pope John Paul have,ignore those ques- Worse. tions and have said in effect, Any nation which "By leaving intact the deep causes of violence engages in warfare is acting morally so long as that international politics are still based prima- B this pan of the world, a peace obtained with it wins?" rib/on military power. But for cenutries the ~,~ ~IL~I~ ~Veapons would only lead to the preparation of * The small number of allied lrool~ who Church has been advocating a new international ~g/.t~ flew violence," the Pope said only a few days were killed do not make the 100,000 Iraqi demhs order based on law rather than military force. ~~ before the war began, less tragic. The Pope's job is to speak on behalf Should Pope John Paul have abandoned the ~'g~ The day after the war began on Jan. 16 the of all people, not just a single region or nation. Church's search for a truly new world order ~ P0pe said, "the beginning of this waL.. marks a Wouldwe want Pope John Paul to have said in and instead have lent his support to the con- IA~ ~ grave defeat for international law and the in- effect, The deaths of 100,000 human beings tinued use of military power? ~ ~~ ~11~!~ k~aafional community." don't matter?" ~ght 1991 Ivan Kauffman L /llmm,~ll Igtr*'~lr~l. MclcrI$~uNIvcI Catholic ex~r#r/CNS Throughout the war the Holy Father con- * The Pope is aware of the impact the Gulf Make a joyful noise unto the Lord. I ~ - , They look out at us from the victim is blamed and the brutal,Janus-faced |[ ~ ~ ~ _~..~L~ ~ ~ .~ ~'- our television screens - hol- manipulator of an illegal, despotic and un- ][ ~L,~r~,~[,~l~ ~!i ~ low-eyed, gaunt-bodied, ev- Dear Editor:. democratic occupation and partition and of a i ~ ,~:'~ ........... II ' , i ' ~ ~,::~ ery nb ws,ble for the count- ' In response to ,the artide, "Catholics not self-serving structured, economic, social and II ~ ing. Flies crawl unnoticed a are of Church s social teaching, I too cultural apartheid is absolved in her manifold II across their faces. They myself ignorant. I would like to offer a deprivation of civil and human rights even to I I " move listlessly, without en- few suggestions. First, could the Ar~ life itself. II T~l~dl~l~, W~ ergy. Who are they? They Catholic publish a series on the history and V'lsits to Ireland this past summer by two 1[ 11,t are the children of poverty social teachings of the Cathofic Church? discrete fact-finding groups from the American I I _ _ _ - ~ and despair They have little ~Cond, along with this series, it might be Irish Political Education Committee (AIPEC) II Rev. William Gouldi:i:: :~'Z.~ , - ," -- I I ................. w"-.dY nope ano tess tuture. .helpful to list other publications concern- and American Protestants for Truth about Ire- ] ~ ~,~ We are uncomfortable as .~g this topic and how such material could land (AIrFI) resulted in many similar condusions ] ............... we look at them. So we be obtained for individual and group study about the role of the Church in the present I Acts 3: 13-15, 17-19 * I John 2:1-5 * hxke 24: N change channels as quickly ,~ld prayerful reflection. Finally, could you conflict. They both agree that the Church fo- as possible, hoping p~?rhaps list parish study programs which are cur- cuses on the effects of the struggle and conve- rently available on this topic? niently ignores the causes, that a chance-found sitcom Mll raise our spirits and make us laugh. Perhaps some catchy commercial's jingle Mll wipe out what we have just seen. Cathy Fitzgtn-ald AIPEC had this to report= ~I'he members of But their empty eyes continue to haunt us. , ~tt, AR the delegation came away concerned that This weekend we continue to celebrate and savor the Easter season. We treasure Easter s P.S. The Perspective in the same issue Church leaders in general have no wish to make beautiful message. Our minds recall the wonderful story of Jesus' rising from the dead. The ~rns excellent. ,,The afflicted and oppressed significant change...Church leaders seem more beginnings of a Spring-like freshness joins with Easter to promise new life. are often God s greatest instruments of concerned with maintaining their power and But empty eyes continue to haunt us. grace, privilege as guaranteed by the British Army and The first disciples knew that Jesus was real when they looked at the nail marks piercing British funding." As a native of occupied Ireland, I hope soon His hands and feet, when they touched Him and felt His solid flesh and bones. The same to see an end to the hypocritical, supercilious, risen Christwho appeared among them wants ~ ~ I)e~r Editor:. arrogant and oppressive British role, largely to become our lifegiver. He wants to forgwe and heal us, change us. He offers us new life. We are uncolnfortable [is So, the Irish hierarchy blames the imprison- masked by an ubiquimous British propaganda But He also calls us to action: "You are wit- . _ __ ,1 raent of the Birmingham Six on the Irish Re- machine, carefully honed throughout an in' nesses of this." 100K ~ linen1. PUblican Army. And the sun also rises in the glorious history of empire, by a rigid system of Unlike Peter's audience, we are not directly east! Since they capitulated to the British power British censorship, by an obsequious and responsible for Jesus' death. But our sins (of ~d purse in 1799 they have danced to whatever complacent Irish Church and by a myopic An- omission as weU as commission) helped nail Him to the cross. They continue to do so. 'I lane their patron has chosen to play Where glophile American media and administration. assure you, whenever you did it to one of these least ones, you did it to me." (Mt. 25: 45) ~as the moral indignation at the massive loss of If justice and freedom from oppression are Most of the time we have "acted out of ignorance" rather than malice. We have walked life at Churchill's vengeful and capricious ever achieved, the Irish hierarchy will have no ~ornbing of Dresden in the waning days of role in it. through life deaf and blind to the needs of those around us. We have been more self- rid War n? Or the callous sinking of a non- The Irish people are slowly throwing off a centered than we realized. It is to us that Peter addresses his trumpet-like call: "Therefore, threatening warship Belgrano in bellicose slave mentality, engendered by eight centuries reform your lives! Tum to God that your sins may be wiped oufi" Malvinas Maggie's little war? of autocratic, insensitive and contumelious How do we do this? After John reminds us thatJesus' mercy is without limits, he says that The champions of Irish freedom shortly at'- misrule. I wonder how "aux le Bastille" translates we can be sure we know Him if we "keep his commandments."John considers love - an tea- the turn of the century, celebrated today in into Gaelic? active and giving love - to be the basic commandment. SOng and verse- yesterday's '~aen of violence"- Tom Deehan Do empty eyes still haunt u~ ~ere threatened with excommunication, Today, Mountain Home Perhaps we need something this disturbing to wake us up - to better understand the implications of resurrection and new life.Jesus' disciples are people who have experienced forgiveness and resurrection power. That gives us a new sensitivity to those around us, a new awareness of their needs. "Beloved, if God has loved us so, we must have the same love for one another." (I john 4: 11) What about those empty eyes? What are we going to do about them?