“Before being God’s gift to man and a human project in conformity with the divine plan, peace is in the first place a basic attribute of God: ‘The Lord is peace’ (Jdg 6:24). Creation, which is a reflection of the divine glory, aspires to peace. God created all that exists, and all of creation forms a harmonious whole that is good in its every part. Peace is founded on the primary relationship that exists between every human being and God himself, a relationship marked by righteousness. Following upon the voluntary act by which man altered the divine order, the world experienced the shedding of blood and division. Violence made its appearance in interpersonal relationships and in social relationships. Peace and violence cannot dwell together, and where there is violence, God cannot be present.”-Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church, 488
There are many Church documents and papal encyclicals and messages concerning the promotion of peace in the world. See the resource section below for links to where many of these documents can be read online.
Just War Theory
“At one and the same time:
- The damage inflicted by the aggressor on the nation or community of nations must be lasting, grave, and certain;
- All other means of putting an end to it must have been shown to be impractical or ineffective;
- There must be serious prospects of success;
- The use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated. The power of modern means of destruction weighs very heavily in evaluating this condition.”
-Catechsim of the Catholic Church, 2309
- Gaudium et Spes; 77 – 93
- Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2258 – 2330
- Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church, 488 – 520
- Papal Messages for World Peace Day:
- Encyclical by Blessed John XXIII – Pacem in Terris
- USCCB Document – The Challenge of Peace (.pdf 474kb)
- AMS Curriculum Guide, Grade 8 segment, page 64, Standard 12, Indicator 08.12.07, Just War.
- National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry, Just War resources.