Peacemakers in Rome

Catholic leaders from some of the world’s worst conflict zones gathered in Rome on May 29 and 30 to discuss ways to make peace. “In South Sudan, the Philippines, and Congo, in the Middle East and Central America, the Catholic Church is a powerful force for justice and reconciliation,” said Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. “But this impressive and courageous peacebuilding often remains unknown, underanalyzed and unappreciated.” Anticipating the 50th anniversary of Pope John XXIII’s encyclical “Pacem in Terris,” the seminar, “New Challenges for Catholic Peacebuilding,” examined the best practices of contemporary Catholic peacebuilding as carried out in places where hatred has led to mass killings and destruction. “‘Pacem in Terris’ remains a living teaching,” said the Rev. Pierre Cibambo of Caritas Internationalis. “Situations of violence and terrorism have changed over the past 50 years, but the will and the ability to build peace remains.”

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