Thursday, December 16, 2010

Third Thursday of Advent

                                              Peace Through Christ

How shall godless men ever set this world aright? Such seek peace by means of war.  This is never a solution.  The mightier rules simply  by force and not by justice.  Truce peace must be founded upon God as the Supreme Being and mankind as His brotherly children.  If, therefore, a nation be godless, we cannot hope to find peace by aligning our cause to it.  First we must seek the Kingdom of God and His justice and all else shall be added thereunto.

     The peace of our hearts at Advent time must be a Christlike quest, for only in Christ shall we find a true foundation for our hopes.  All else is ephemeral and not lasting.  The peace of Christ is won by prayer and sacrifice.

     The peace of Christs is the peace of Christmas which follows the season of penitential Advent.  The lesson of Gaudete Sunday too, is that joy is purchased at the price of penance and heaven is won by the warriors who carry a cross.

     The peace of Christ is not the peace of one nationality lording it over another because of a mightier army or a more powerful banking system.  Alas, all such power,  being founded upon very unstable bases, is bound to pass away.  The peace of Christ, which is the fruit of justice, can  be brought to pass only when the principles of the Master, found in the Gospels and enunciated by the Vicar of Christ, are practiced by all nations seeking our common end, namely, God's glory and man's eternal destiny.  This end requires curtailment of selfish ends.  It means a curbing of national pride when that pride oversteps its bounds by infringing upon the rights of other nations.  Greed is the cancer that has eaten away at the very vitals of men and nations, and only the healing hand of the divine Physician can reach down and, getting at the cause of our troubles, cut it way.  Human diplomacy and ingenuity can never restore peace unless it is based and founded upon God.

     This brings us to the second much needed element in the attainment of peace, namely, prayer.  Says the poet, "More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of", but prayer is not the fruit of a worldly generation.  Prayer is man's inmost conversating with God.  With the roar of cannon, with so much emphasis on man and so little emphasis on God, prayer becomes a forgotten instrument in the attainment of peace.  For the spirit becomes secondary to the material in the life of a modern worldling until prayer, being neglected, becomes dead and buried.

     Pope Pius XII promised France his understanding, sympathy, and encouragement in her struggle to recover from the war when he received the credentials of the French ambassador to the Holy See.  It is  comforting to read, too, the spiritual reflection of the ambassador, who said that since the expectations of earthly help had been vain France was now turning toward a more enduring source of comfort.  The ambassador said that France "adheres to the peace of the Holy Father as so often invoked and defended."  The French people, said the Holy Father, would find nowhere "a more prompt co-operation, a more intimate sympathy, a more sincere encouragement than the common Father of all the faithful."

Blessed Savior, who came into the world on Christmas Day to bring peace to all mankind, behold we, Your suppliant children, implore You to give us peace - the peace which the world cannot give, the peace of justice, the peace of charity, the true eternal peace of Christ which leads to everlasting life.