Think about this. A world at peace. A world where justice rules and peace reigns. A world where no one is forced to go to bed hungry or homeless or powerless. A world where the threat of annihilation by weapons of mass destruction is no more. Impossible?
No, as a matter of fact, it is not impossible. We actually could be living in such a world right now on March 6, 2013, had people heeded 50 years ago the wisdom of Blessed John XXIII in Pacem in Terris (Peace on Earth), the encyclical he published on April 11, 1963, as he struggled with the cancer that would take his life a few months later. There is nothing in this encyclical that could not become a reality if our generation only had the heart to live by the kind of ethic it calls for. It’s not an impossible dream.
Sr. Patricia McCarthy, CND, who writes a monthly column for The Rhode Island Catholic, has permitted me to share her reflections on Pacem in Terris with you as the world waits and the cardinal electors try to discern who has been called by the Holy Spirit to lead the Church.
I invite you to read or reread Pacem in Terris itself along with Sister Patricia’s article, which I have printed below. You will discover that a just and peaceful world does not have to remain an unfulfilled hope.