Tuesday, June 23, 2015

"Peace of the Lord be with you"

Children after birth are given a name which in many cases contains a wish of the parents for the child. Much meaning comes with the name and this is also true of a country. An article in the Catholic Times, addresses the topic for the readers on the 70th year of the division of the country.

Korea  also has  a name.The South is called the Republic of Korea, and the North is the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. Is that what we call the two areas or is it  North Korea  and South Korea? Or do we call North Korea the Puppet Regime and South Korea a colony of the  United States?

If we want communication to proceed we know the need to be sensitive to the feelings of the other party, otherwise we face each other as enemies with no hope of progress. The columnist remembers the time in the  seminary when he and his classmates worked as volunteers helping the refugees to prepare for qualification exams, and were concerned on what to call the children. Would it be defectors or new migrants?  They decided to call each one by their name, accepting each one of them as individuals, without giving them any label that would lessen the respect and love that they wanted to show to each of the students.

When we pray for the reconciliation and unity of the country, we are not recognizing the wrong headed philosophy or  refusing to see all those who are hurting under the system. Catholicism has difficulty coexisting with Communistic materialism, and  we are not asking those who suffered during the war to forget all that transpired, but to think over what happened and learn from the history. However, if we are not able to look beyond what we experienced there is no hope for peace. 

June 25th is the day we remember the Korean War and pray for peace. We Christians should be the leaders in this movement.

 Peace is not merely the absence of war, nor can it be reduced solely to the maintenance of a balance of power between enemies. Rather it is founded on a correct understanding of the human person and requires the establishment of an order based on justice and charity. (Compendium of the Social Gospel of the Church # 494).

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