“Put your sword back in its place …” (Matthew 26:52). South Sudan has recently experienced the joy of the Ecumenical Peace Pilgrimage to South Sudan by Pope Francis, the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr. Justin Welby, and the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland Rt. Rev. Dr. Iain Greenshields. All three of our global Church Leaders were united in their call for nonviolence as the solution to South Sudan’s problems. Deeper than simply avoiding war, nonviolence calls us to a new way of life that respects the dignity of every person and the integrity of creation. Nonviolence names a core value of the Gospel, in which Jesus combined an unmistakable rejection of violence with the power of love and truth in action for justice and peace. Nonviolence is broader than pacifism. It is much more than the absence of violence; it is never passive. It is a spirituality, a constructive force, an effective method for social transformation, and a powerful way of life committed to the well-being of all. His Holiness Pope Francis has revealed the sacrament of nonviolence. Here the symbol becomes substance as we embody the visible acts of nonviolence. Let it be our institutions, the Church, who teach, preach and heal through the sacrament of nonviolence for the salvation of Mother Earth and all her Children. (CNI Rome December 2022). Attached is the SSCC Statement on Gospel Nonviolence.


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