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There is Hope

[caption id="attachment_3600" align="alignright" width="200"] Blog by Associate Frank Martens, OPA[/caption] In this information age we are constantly reminded about wars in the Middle East, Africa and other places. We live in a time of what seems like endless war. But there is hope. Deaths from war related violence are decreasing. From 100,000 a year in the 90’s to 55,000 a year since the turn of the century. 180,000 people died every year from war related violence from 1950 to 1989. Of course, even one death is too many and we mourn for those people and their families. As we approach the 34th International Day of Peace, we should be encouraged that some progress has been made to bring about world peace. At 12:00pm in every time zone this Friday, September 21, we can join millions of others by spending 10 minutes praying for peace. Praying for peace should be followed by working for peace.  Part of my prayer will be to ask God to give me the strength and the courage to actively practice nonviolence in my daily life. I find inspiration from Thomas Merton who said we must never lose hope that someday our world will be a peaceful world. He called it the “work of hope”. “The work of hope requires resisting our own violence and practicing nonviolence as best we can, then communicating to others the many nonviolent alternatives available.” (John Dear Thomas Merton Peacemaker) As sisters and associates for Peace, let us commit to discovering and sharing new and effective nonviolence alternatives and commit each day to “Be Peace.”

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