An blog by a member of the Catholic peace movement, Pax Christi, to explore the nexus between contemplation and resistance. "The Christian must discover in contemplation, and in the giving of his life, those symbolic actions which will ignite the people's faith to resist injustice with their whole lives, lives coming together as a united force of truth and thus releasing the liberating power of the God within them." - James Douglass, Contemplation and Resistance.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Christian Solidarity

Yesterday it was revealed that Mary McCarthy at the CIA was probably the source of the revelations about the secret prisons to which the CIA rendered suspected terrorists in order to torture them. What must the Christian attitude be toward those who uncover grave human rights abuses which are currently being carried out by this administration? This woman took an oath to protect the secrets of this government - can we defend her action without diminishing the virtue of keeping one's promises? The Church teaches us that "Professional secrets - for example, those of political office holders, soldiers, physicians, and lawyers - or confidential information given under the seal of secrecy must be kept, save in exceptional cases where keeping the secret is bound to cause very grave harm to the one who confided it, to the one who received it or to a third party, and where the very grave harm can be avoided only by divulging the truth. Even if not confided under the seal of secrecy, private information prejudicial to another is not to be divulged without a grave and proportionate reason." Catechism #2491. Is not the torture of a fellow human being precisely the exceptional case that the Catechism provides for? In fact, is this situation not precisely the "ticking bomb" scenario so beloved of the right-wing media? Our brothers are currently being held in secret prisons where they are being tortured and perhaps murdered. The CIA knows where they are and knows the harm that they are doing to these images of God. The only way to render them justice is to raise a public outcry that may awaken the latent shame that lies in the heart of the most bureaucratic abuser. Does the obligation to free the victims of such injustice overrule the obligation to protect "professional secrets"? If only those who wear the name of Christian would start proclaiming the truth from the bowels of this Bluebeard which we blindly call our security, that sea of tears, then at last the cleansing process could begin. Let us pray that those in government will claim their status as sons and daughters of God and throw off the paralysis that seals their lips while the image of God is degraded and done to death. The Christian support which Mary McCarthy receives will say much about our commitment to God's love.

"For men and women in a nuclear world, when the human race has outgrown war but hardly knows it yet, Jesus more than ever is the best way to liberation, freedom, and peace. The hostility that churned up Cain and that others throughout the centuries have sought to perpetuate, Jesus seeks to ground. That makes it our calling to ground, not to perpetuate, hostility. The violence stops here, with each one of us who claims Christ's holy name. The gossip, the false witness borne against a neighbor, the cold unconcern for warm human beings - all forms of violence, everything that violates human nature - stops with us." William Sloan Coffin.

1 comment:

mona said...

Hi
I agree to your words that Jesus is the best way to liberation, freedom and peace. All forms of violence, everything that violates human nature stops with each one of us who claims Christ's holy name.
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