Father rich in love, I thank you today for all the good you do to me, and for all you do in me. Allow me to answer with love the good done to me as well as any offences. I offer you my work today, in union with the intentions of Pope Francis. Glory be to the Father...
That the language of love and dialogue may always prevail over the language of conflict.
The language of peacemaking is not easy. It demands both honesty and dialogue. Pope Francis urges us not to be indifferent to others, to find ways of responding to injustice and brokenness. So we ask, what has gone wrong? Whose interests are being protected and threatened here and why? Who is causing the violence and who is cooperating with it? We say, this behaviour must stop.
At the same time we want to bring about deep, lasting peace with justice, to find opportunities to work things out together. This requires deep listening even with a perpetrator or ‘enemy’. We want to appeal to the other to make better choices that will affirm the humanity of all those involved.
Jesus did both and inspired Gandhi who developed the nonviolent approach of satyagraha, truth or soul force, waging a struggle and searching for an alternative, deeper harmony beneath the conflict.
Imagine two hands of nonviolence. The upright hand says: Stop, this is not acceptable. The open and outstretched hand says: We need to talk, I am open to you, we have to face this together and change.
- Pat Gaffney, extracted from Living Prayer