Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Sunday, April 22, 2007

A Revolution of Love...

Several weeks ago in his Angelus message, Pope Benedict called for a revolution: a revolution of love. He sees this as the antidote to violence and injustice. Rightfully, it is good which conquers evil; it is love that conquers hate. This is basic. That is why it is a recurrent theme in so many action, science fiction, and, of course, horror novels and films. Even when evil has the upper hand and all seems lost, an unexpected turn occurs and good triumphs.

The Holy Father said:

Why does Jesus ask us to love our very enemies, that is, ask a love that exceeds human capacities? What is certain is that Christ's proposal is realistic, because it takes into account that in the world there is too much violence, too much injustice, and that this situation cannot be overcome without positing more love, more kindness. This "more" comes from God: It is his mercy that has become flesh in Jesus and that alone can redress the balance of the world from evil to good, beginning from that small and decisive "world" which is man's heart. (Pope Benedict XVI, Angelus message, Feb. 18, 2007).

Pope Benedict goes on to explain the passage in St. Luke's Gospel about turning the other cheek. "To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well..." (6:29). Christ was teaching us not to surrender to evil, but rather to respond to evil with good. Then, the evil is stopped and not continued or escalated. This is a revolution—a turning around. Good can come from an evil situation.

It is thus understood that nonviolence, for Christians, is not mere tactical behavior but a person's way of being, the attitude of one who is convinced of God's love and power, who is not afraid to confront evil with the weapons of love and truth alone. Loving the enemy is the nucleus of the "Christian revolution"...

The revolution of love, a love that does not base itself definitively in human resources, but in the gift of God, that is obtained only and unreservedly in his merciful goodness. Herein lies the novelty of the Gospel, which changes the world without making noise. (Ibid.)

May each of us think, indeed meditate, on this teaching. May each of us always try to live this Revolution of Love .

Fr. Stanley