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Actively making peace May 15, 2011

Posted by chezanni in Inspiration.
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Mary Lou Kownacki is a sister of the Order of St. Benedict and the former director of Pax Christi. She’s been a peacemaker for a long, long time. One of her books on prayer is The Fire of Peace.

“Peacemaking,” she writes, “is not an optional commitment. It is a requirement of our faith. We are called to be peacemakers.”

I think a lot of us treat peacemaking as optional. We say to ourselves and others, “Oh, let’s get the environmental crisis [or whatever else you want to put there] handled, and then we’ll work on peace.” Just like the environment, peace only exists in one time: now.

Being committed to do our own small part for the environment is important because if I do my part, and you do yours, eventually the small parts we accomplish add up. The same is true of making peace.

Peacemaking. I like that word. It’s an activity, something to do. The business of peace as a stasis has got to be blasted or wafted away. I read the other day about a young child on a walk who inadvertently kicked an anthill. When it happened, he was devastated—he’d made the ants homeless. But he had a wise caregiver with him, as it happens—a peacemaker, who dried his tears and knowing the habits of ants, settled in to watch, holding the sniffling little boy.

Ants do not panic when there’s a crisis like the unwitting foot of a small boy. They, being true to their nature, organize. Home obliterated? Okay, let’s build a new one. That little boy stood very still for one so young and learned a valuable lesson that day.

Just as we make a home, we make peace. And it’s an everyday thing or it’s nothing at all. Not optional either. Required.

For spiritual nourishment, please visit susancorso.com.

Photo by Sancho McCann via Flickr.

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