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War is Madness

Christians should courageously denounce all wars and the manufacturing and trading of arms, or in the words of Pope Francis, the “diabolical and perverse logic of weapons.”

“War is madness! Stop, please! Look at this cruelty!” That is how Pope Francis named the war in Ukraine, calling for a ceasefire and offering the Holy See’s mediation to achieve a peaceful solution. 

I hope that by the time this issue of World Mission comes out, weapons have fallen silent. However, as I write this piece, the bombardments have become more indiscriminate and lethal. “Rivers of blood and tears are flowing in Ukraine,” said the Pope in his Sunday Angelus. 

As of this writing, the fighting is in its second week. The invasion of Ukraine by the Russian military is sowing death, destruction, and misery, causing the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II. A million and a half people were fleeing and crossing into neighboring countries. 

At one point, Putin issued threats to Western countries against meddling in the war as he placed on high alert his nuclear weapons system. Such menace caused grave concern at the time as Russia holds the largest arsenal of nuclear weapons in the planet. This was a stark warning to the world that we are on the brink of a nuclear war that can annihilate part of humanity. 

Amid this unfolding tragedy, the bravery of the Ukrainian people has stood out. Under the defiant leadership of President Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine is resisting the onslaught of the invaders fighting back the mighty Russian forces. It is praiseworthy the warm welcome offered by neighboring nations to their brothers and sisters who were escaping the atrocities of war.

Will there be a ceasefire by Easter time?  Will the noise of arms and artilleries have given way to stillness and peace? The resurrection of Jesus Christ symbolizes the longing for a new humanity. We are the Paschal people who believe in a renewed world. Rooted in this certainty, Christians must continue ardently praying and acting for peace.  

As followers of a non-violent Jesus and living a Gospel that rejects all forms of violence and war, we need to commit ourselves to build a new world model based on social justice, peace, and love. 

In one of his latest columns, social justice and peace activist Tony Magliano suggests that Christians should courageously denounce all wars and the manufacturing and trading of arms, or in the words of Pope Francis, the “diabolical and perverse logic of weapons.” If military budgets were drastically reduced, those funds could even be transferred to assist the needs of countless poor and hungry fellow human beings. 

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