E Pluribus Unum ?Out of Many, One?

UNST 100 05 CRN 94561    Father Benjamin J. Urmston, S.J., PhD  (See web-site for personal background)

Spring 2013, Tuesdays, Thursdays,  Mar. 5 to Apr. 16   4 to  5:15 pm,   (not Holy Thursday, Mar. 28)Schott 10th floor, Rm 1001

  • Text: Selected parts of Fr. Ben Urmston?s web-page. www.xavier.edu/frben  (Assigned readings will be moderate)
  • Course Goal: To introduce Xavier students to the advantages of cultural diversity and to an awareness of what the human family has in common. To begin to appreciate what the motto E Pluribus Unum can mean for all of us today. Thus three goals 1. To see the value of diversity 2. To see the value of cooperating together as one human family.  Diversity is not divisiveness. 3. To begin to examine what structures we need to better bring about diversity and harmony among all.

Course Expectations:

Prompt attendance at Class is very important. If you are absent, let me know why and ask another class member or members or the speaker to help you get your Journal up to date.  Active participation in the Course is encouraged.  Three absences are one-fourth of this brief course.  If not made up, three absences would give me doubt that credit can be given in good conscience.

Expectations of the instructor:
Listening to instructor and guest speakers who will enlarge your experience.. Participating in discussions. Listening to one another, not dominating nor disrupting the class. No private conversations. E-mails sent to you are part of my presentations and instruction and should be integrated into your growth during this course.

2. Interview two people different from you, preferably from a group you know little or nothing about, a Catholic, a Protestant, a Muslim, a Jewish person, a black, a white, a liberal, a conservative, a pro-life person, a pro-choice person, a poor person etc. What special strengths can they add to our world? What do you have in common with them?  Put the interviews in your journal.

 3. Your main assignment is to produce by dates, (e.g. Mar. 5) a journal of class speakers, your main insights, experiences, and interviews. How have you grown in this brief course? How can we minimize prejudice, recognize the strengths and talents of one another and work together for a peace with justice?  I will send you e-mails from time to time.  Keep these as part of your journal.   If a speaker provides a hand-out, keep these also as part of your journal.  I suggest notes during class.  After brief reflection on notes, give your reaction to main points, e.g. "a vision is valuable,  I'm not sure yet that I agree with economic democracy and a democratic world federation but I'll keep an open mind."  Presuming normal participation, you will be able to use your journals during the final test. Journals will then be collected at last class..

4.  You will be expected to present to the class my Vision of Hope, one of your interviews, one of the speaker's main points and the impression she/he made on you, the three objectives below, your own insights and vision.

? Objectives:
? By the end of the course students should 1. be able to describe stereotype, prejudice, and discrimination, why the latter are wrong, and how to minimize their occurrence. 2. know ways of promoting understanding, unity, and cooperation among people of diverse backgrounds, talents, and strengths 3. begin to develop a vision of where humankind should be headed, your own talents and strengths, how you can best lead toward your vision.

? Grading: Pass, Fail. The grade assigned is my judgment of the quality of your tests, journal, and presentation. Eventually I encourage you to envision your own internal and external structures, but I also want you to listen, read, and assimilate the main ideas in the course. Since the course is pass, fail, the main concern you need to have is whether or not you are below 70.  However, this may be a course in which you have the opportunity to grow and enlarge your horizons.

Open discussion encouraged but comments need to be non-violent made in a civil manner. We want to learn to be open and honest, but we want also to learn compassionate listening. Each student is a human person. Name calling, emphasizing guilt, or belittling by association has no place in efforts to see the positive in other groups or individuals.  Catechism of the Catholic Church p. 594 no. 2477 "Respect for the reputation of persons forbids every attitude and word likely to cause a person unjust injury." 2478 "To avoid rash judgment, everyone should be careful to interpret insofar as possible his neighbor's thoughts, words, and deeds in a favorable way: 'Every good Christian ought to be more ready to give a favorable interpretation of another's statement than to condemn it. But if he cannot do so, let him ask how the other understands it.' St. Ignatius of Loyola, Spiritual Exercises, 22.

Feel free to e-mail me any questions or comments urmston@xavier.edu

Origin of the motto of the US: E Pluribus Unum was the Latin motto proposed in 1776  for the first Great Seal of the United States of America by John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson and approved by the Continental Congress. The Latin phrase meaning ?From many, one? expressed the determination of the colonies to make one unified nation of people from many different backgrounds and beliefs. The challenge of seeking unity while respecting diversity has played a critical role in shaping US history, our literature, and our national character.

Schedule of classes :

Mar. 5:   Vision of Hope of Fr. Ben Urmston, S.J. How will better structures create a better world? Name and explain briefly the five external and two internal structures of my own vision. Give some elements of my way toward the vision.

Mar. 7:  Mrs. Barbara Smitherman.  Segregation in the South. Housing.   (For extra interest:  See lack of ratification by U.S. Senate of CEDAW, Covenant to End Discrimination Against Women www.cedaw2010.org/ Approved by United Nations General Assembly in 1979, signed by President Carter. What can we do as citizens to foster appropriate relationships of respect with women?)

Mar. 12:  Mac Johnson.  Faith and Justice.  Cooperatives.

Mar. 14:  Liza and Albert Smitherman.  Jostin Concrete.  Diversity in Business.

Mar. 19:  Christopher Smitherman.  Diversity in government. 

Mar. 21:  Rabbi Abie Ingber.  Jewish Faith.  Interfaith programs at Xavier.  Jacob Bender  Director of Documentary Film, Out of Cordoba.

Mar. 26:  Karen Dabdoub,  Executive Director of Council on American Islamic Relations.  Muslim Faith.

Apr. 2:  Dr. Arthur Shriberg.  Jewish Faith.

Apr. 4:  Ms Donna Park:  A Vision of Peace for the World Community.  A structure that would give us more security and communication.
Apr. 9:  Dr. Waleed El-Ansary.  Muslim Chair.  Common Word.

Apr. 11:  Review. Presentations.

Apr. 16:  Final Exam; hand in Journals.

 

 


  General Review Questions
 1.. How can we minimize discrimination, prejudice, stereotypes?

2.  What is the value today of diversity (pluribus)?  Of cooperation (Unum)? What are ways to maximize diversity and cooperation?

3.  Name and explain briefly the five external and two internal structures I presented in class to better bring about diversity yet harmony among all.  What is meant by spiritual freedom?

4.  Do you have your own version of external and internal structures and sub-structures that we need?

5.   Name the speakers and give some of the main points they made.  Describe one of your interviews.

  Several classes will feature guest speakers and discussion.

Suggested observations to begin to understand the value of this course.

  We all are diverse in many positive ways. We have different personalities and strengths. We have read different books and had different experiences. We can combine these strengths and talents and work together for a better Xavier and a better world.

The value of diversity has many answers.  Each individual and each ethic group and most religions have strengths as well as weaknesses.  We always want to emphasize strengths rather than weaknesses.  We gain when we embrace strengths from many different groups.  Different strengths can contribute to the common good.  We gain when we cooperate with different groups, indeed, when we cooperate as one human family on major issues such as war and peace, basic human rights, the global economy, the sustainabiliity of our earth.  In our personal lives as well as with other nations our emphasis should be on compassionate listening to the needs of others instead of finding fault with one another, putting one another down, hoarding resources, lording it over others, fighting with one another.  A change in our attitudes could create a more positive, sharing, loving world, a world able to progress in the arts and sciences, and in knowledge and love of one another.

My main distinctive gift to you is the offer of a vision of hope, envisioning external and internal structures that would make this a world more in accord with God?s Word, a new beginning for all of us. If you remember anything from this brief course, I want you to remember and be able to explain briefly my five main external structures:  a common ethic; the various forms of non-violence, especially peace education; getting basic civil, political, economic, and solidarity rights into our legal and constitutional structures; a fair, inclusive form of economic democracy; and a democratic world federation. 

I invite you on a brief journey together. I believe in dialogue, not debate, a moderate challenge. We need a certain level of basic respect and trust to grow together.

Some of the ideas we present may be new to you.  Give them a chance to settle, think about them, and try to understand them before you reject them.

I have certain convictions on basic issues. I will try to explain why I have these convictions. I may challenge your own convictions or try to help you see the implications of your position.

The course is not directed against anyone. We do make judgments about actions and structures. We try to distinguish between the person and the idea a person or group may have.

We will have guest speakers to enlarge our experience. We will attempt to read the signs of the times in current events.

Feel free to let me know how the class is going for you. Understand? enjoy? energized? upset? confused? disagree? It is all right not to understand fully, especially in the beginning.

In our quest for knowledge and truth as we grow as persons I suggest the following questions for reflection:

What degree of spiritual freedom do we have? Are we open to new ideas? What are our vested interests?  Do we acknowledge the possibility of self-deception, rationalization?  Do we recognize that some truths may be inconvenient and challenging?

Before we disagree with someone, are we able first to state the other's view to his/her satisfaction? Then, do we agree or disagree? Why or why not? What are the sources of our information? Is one source more credible than another? Do we have contact on the internet with sources like Pax Christi? Do we trust God's plan for us more than wealth, military might, political power?

Unfortunately, the corporate media and political ads may not always be models for us of non-violent, rational, loving discourse.

Below are questions which may help you to assess your own values and vision during or after the course. I hope this brief course will be a beginning that will continue after the course and even after your graduation.

What is our own background and experience?  Have we had experience of interacting with or working with those of different nationalities, ethnic, religious groups? What do our parents think? Our teachers? Our peers? Our religious faith? The communications media? the Internet? What has been the main sources of our values and ideas?

What is the point of view of the poor? of labor? the family farmer? farmworkers? Corporations? ethnic, religious, or political groups different from us?

What have we done about the issue discussed? What will we do? What should our government do? business? the churches? others?

In what direction do we think the human family should be going? Full production? Full employment? Price stability in necessities? Comprehensive and common security? Greater democracy? More non-violence and openness to one another? More caring and sharing?

How can we move toward our vision?

If you have a question or a comment, feel free to e-mail me or schedule an appointment at my office, 114 Schott Call 745-3320.

 

 

The matter below is not required, but you may find some of it helpful.

Suggested questions for interviews:

Seek understanding without ?yes? or ?no? answers.
What special strengths can you add to the world? What do you feel that you have in common with me? How do you view diversity? What were you taught about diversity? What are some of your core values?
  ?Perhaps you are restless, dissatisfied down deep, incomplete. A Christian Life Community journey or another spiritual and rational journey can help us be more conscious of God?s love for us through family, friends, mentors. We are  challenged to return that love and even reach out to all.
 

 

In the Spiritual Exercises St.Ignatius begins the Second Week by picturing the three Divine Persons gazing on the whole planet and the human family, some white, others black, some at peace, some at war, some weeping, others laughing, some healthy, others sick. The General Principles of Christian Life Community invites members to hear God?s call in the events of our times. Reading the signs of the times may be challenging, but God?s love for us and for others urges us to respond. Ignatian Spirituality helps us to be spiritually free, open to wherever God calls us, even if the call leads us to new convictions, new attitudes, and new actions.
 

Structures can mean buildings like the Student Center. It can also mean the way we organize our world, governments, corporations, universities, the family, ourselves, etc. There are also internal structures, our values, our faith, our attitudes.  To overcome our fear and prejudice besides better external structures, like fair election laws, economic human rights in our legal structures, more democratic structures in corporations, and a democratic world federation we need better internal structures, without which our external structures won't work.

A Jewish author Jacob Needleman, American Soul, Rediscovering the Wisdom of the Founders emphasizes the importance both of external and internal structures, of external and internal order.  Our founders were not saints and they did not assimilate the strengths of native Americans, blacks, women, and workers, but Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, Adams, had their own strengths which we should not overlook. Washington?s Farewell Address has much to recommend in it, especially his discussion of ?the spirit of party? ?He deplored the adversary theory which sees government as a tug of war between holders of opposite views, one side eventually vanquishing the other. Washington saw the national capital as a place where men came together not to tussle but to reconcile disagreements. . . Washington?s own greatest mental gift was to be able to bore down through partial arguments to the fundamental principles on which everyone could agree.? (p. 129) "A religion that is not freely chosen is not religion; and a freedom that is not in the deepest sense religious is not freedom." (p. 132)

Law is a unifying external force, but ?the spirit of party? is also within us. Government exists to allow us to perfect ourselves. (p. 125) Thus to create a better nation and a better world order we need better citizens, better human persons, citizens with a deeper conscience. Government exists to help us to discover the greatness to which we are called.  Internally, we need a spirit of hope, of listening, of cooperation, of  sharing, a sense of the common good which the founders of our nation had.  George Washington:  "Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligations desert the oaths, which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice?. . Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle."

An external structure is the way things are, the way we do things. Although society once had barter, now we use currency. Since there were not many horseless carriages in the beginning, automobiles managed on their own. Now we have stop signs and traffic laws.
The purpose of ordering our structures and relationships is to bring us into closer and more intimate relationships with God, our neighbor, our planet, and all living creatures. To St. Ignatius Loyola, this is the purpose of the Spiritual Exercises, to put more order into our own lives and into the world around us.
The Ignatian Examen of Consciousness can help us reflect on the motions within us and the challenges in the world in which we live.  The Examen can help us to minimize prejudice, discrimination, stereotypes, self-deception, rationalization.
In his visit to Brazil in May, 2007, Pope Benedict XVI, stated the importance of structures: "The encounter with Christ in the Eucharist calls forth a commitment to evangelization and solidarity; the Eucharist awakens a strong desire to proclaim the Gospel and to bear witness to it in the world so as to build a more just and humane society. From the Eucharist a civilization of love springs forth that has and will continue to transform Latin America, making a Continent of Hope, a Continent of Love.

How can the Church contribute to the solution of urgent social and political problems such as poverty, the growing distance between the rich and the poor, drugs, alcohol, false pleasures? . . Just structures are a condition without which a just order in society is not possible, but structures neither arise nor function without a moral consensus on fundamental values, and the need to live these values, even when living God's values goes against personal interest. Contact with God is essential if Latin America wishes to find consensus on common moral values or the strength to live according to our values.

Just structures will never be complete in a definitive way. As history continues to evolve, structures must constantly be renewed and updated. . friendship with Jesus is essential if we are to bring about just and loving structures.

We need to have concern for the human community but also for the protection of the natural environment of which we are all a part." (See Origins, May 24, 2007, Volume 37, No. 2.)

I think it helps us to discern God?s desires if we envision structures or attitudes within us or structures outside of us that we think will work. My experience and discernment lead me to five areas or pillars of a new world mansion.
Visioning gets us out of the present and gives us hope. Visioning helps us to set priorities. After we vision together, we can divide responsibilities on our way toward the vision. No one can do everything. All of us can do something.
To envision: the act or power of imagination; unusual discernment or foresight; an imaginative conception of the future. The ability to generate a vision more in accord with God's Word is a beautiful and energizing grace.
George Bernard Shaw: "You see things and you say, 'Why?' I dream things that never were and say 'Why not?'"
Vision is more than temporary goals. Vision is something enduring, a big truth, a higher purpose that draws us toward the future. It's an image of what should be. A vision inspires groups to join in promoting the common good. The Declaration of Independence led the British colonies to give birth to a nation grouded in "certain unalienable rights. . .among these...life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."

So many of our dreams at first seem impossible. As we proceed together our dreams become more probable. With God's help they eventually become inevitable. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. dreamed of a nation "where my children will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." "I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed."

Our dreams are as realistic as the foundations we put under them. The future belongs to those of us who can imagine a world different from what we now experience. If we don't have ideals, our world will go backwards instead of forward. We need to begin or join movements toward our vision. I have begun a Vision of Hope Team
"Purpose: In joy and in the Spirit to favor love over hate, hope over despair, faith over doubt. To envision internal and external structures that will make our planet sustainable and our human family more ethical and moral; practicing active non-violence, waging peace, seeking to establish security and justice; insisting on basic human rights; working toward economic security and freedom and committed to forming a democratic world federation to act as a legal governing body for the Family of Nations---(See Love in Truth No. 67 Pope Benedict XVI www.vatican.va) Envisioning, going forward, searching for old and new ways and structures in a balanced and peaceful manner, through collaboration, negotiation and mediation to promote, refine, and implement a vision of hope.
Membership: Any person willing to educate themselves and others and then work in their own situation and in their own way to implement a vision of hope in accord with one's time, energy, relationships, and commitments.
For details of my own vision or any part of it, see www.xavier.edu/frben/"

"To desire the common good and strive towards it is a requirement of justice and charity. To take a stand for the common good is on the one hand to be solicitous for, and on the other hand to avail oneself of, that complex of institutions that give structure to the life of society, juridically, civilly, politically and culturally, making it the pólis, or ?city?. The more we strive to secure a common good corresponding to the real needs of our neighbors, the more effectively we love them." Love in Truth, No. 7 Pope Benedict XVI

In the Christian Covenant those who are wise follow a star, do not allow themselves to be tricked by any Herods, take another route if the way to the star seems blocked. By together creating a vision of hope, then working to make our vision a reality, we follow the star that is a light for everyone, Jesus Himself!

Keep in mind that I encourage not heaven on earth, but minimum structures for a world in accord with God's Word. A couple planning their own house want at least a roof to keep out the rain, and a way to stay warm in the winter.

When we vision, we can't consider obstacles. If a couple begins by saying we'll never be able to pay the mortgage, their defeatist attitude will stop them in their tracks. What are the minimum structures that we need? Obstacles can be considered later.

Although we don't want to limit the power of God's grace in our lives, we don't have to have our complete vision immediately. There are steps along the way. The International Criminal Court, a Permanent Peacekeeping Force, the Law of the Seas Treaty, the Covenant to End Discrimination Against Women, The Responsibility to Protect, are important steps toward democratic world order.

In the gospel of Luke 4.18, 19 which builds on Leviticus 25, Jesus has a vision of a fresh start for each human person and for our whole human family. Jesus wanted a world in which each one of us has at least the minimum essentials of livelihood. What is the vision of Jesus today for our peace.? The way of Jesus is the way of non-violence, justice, forgiveness, and love.

Because of original sin, I think our present vision of the world is murky and cloudy. Perhaps together and with the help of the Holy Spirit we can get our vision of where we want to go back in focus. We need "a sustained interdisciplinary dialogue of research and reflection, a continuous pooling of expertise. The purpose is to assimilate experiences and insights according to their different disciplines in 'a vision of knowledge which, well aware of its limitations, is not satisfied with fragments but tries to integrate them into a true and wise synthesis.' "(Pope John Paul II, Address to Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Milan, May 5, 2000, n. 9 cited by Fr. Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, S.J. in address to 28 Jesuit Colleges and Universities, Santa Clara University, Oct. 6, 2000.)

The whole idea of visioning world structures may seem daunting and overwhelming. But I never underestimate the will and power of God for good. Nor with God and God's Spirit within us, our own power of together making a world more in accord with God's Word. The establishment of the International Criminal Court, the European Union, the culture of human rights in our world have been nothing short of miracles. With one another and with God's help, starting small, we can go forward with a vision of peace. Perhaps one part of our vision appeals to us more than others, and we want to develop and work say for an aspect of non-violence.

Envisioning new structures gives us hope. Moving toward our vision gives us hope. "All serious and upright human conduct is Hope in action." Pope Benedict XVI. http://www.vatican.va Spe Salvi No.35. . Upright human conduct is Hope in action in the sense that we thereby strive to realize our lesser and greater hopes, to complete this or that task which is important for our onward journey, or we work towards a brighter and more humane world so as to open doors into the future. Yet our daily efforts in pursuing our own lives and in working for the world's future either tire us or turn into fanaticism, unless we are enlightened by the radiance of the great hope that cannot be destroyed even by small-scale failures or by a breakdown in matters of historic importance. If we cannot hope for more than is effectively attainable at any given time, or more than is promised by political or economic authorities, our lives will soon be without hope. It is important to know that I can always continue to hope, even if in my own life, or the historical period in which I am living, there seems to be nothing left to hope for, only the great certitude of hope that my own life and history in general, despite all failures, are held firm by the indestructible power of Love, and that this gives them their meaning and importance. Only this kind of hope can then give the courage to act and to persevere.?

What does the world need? Visioning can help us to clarify the greatest and most essential needs and how new essential structures would complement one another and work harmoniously together.  What is at the heart of things? Structures if changed will have rippling consequences for other structures, e.g. ending the war system, a fair inclusive global economy, a sustainable planet.

What are my talents, strengths? What do I like to do? Where are my passions, desires, and ambitions? These questions can help us discern our long-range and short-range call from God.

There is no one more dangerous than someone who has every reason to hate and nothing to lose.  We need to work for a world in which it is easier to be good, a world where everyone has every reason to love and everything to lose.

Stereotypes: A stereotype is when attributes commonly associated with a group are assigned to an individual. For example, A person is classified into a group on the basis of one piece of information, such as age or gender. Characteristics commonly associated with the group are then assigned to the individual. What is generalized about the group (e.g. ?Young people dislike authority?) may or may not be true about the individual. Gender stereotypes: ?He?s talking with co-workers.? Interpretation: He?s discussing a new deal. ?She?s talking with co-workers.? Interpretation: She?s gossiping.

Discrimination: treating differently on a basis other than individual merit, e. g. not employing a black applicant or a native American applicant because of a prejudice against blacks and/or native Americans; giving a construction contract to a white corporation rather than to a predominantly black one.

Prejudice: an opinion without just grounds or before sufficient knowledge, an irrational attitude of hostility against a group because of their supposed characteristics, e.g. detaining Arab Muslims at airports because of presumed proclivity to hi-jack planes; presuming that radical fundamentalists are only found among Muslims; holding Senate hearings on "radical Muslim fundamentalists" instead of all radical fundamentalist terrorists.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6SKpv-MwXE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqbQWxHIn4U

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tgOLVy5qWI

 

Is a reasoned or faith conviction different from bias? After years of study, experience, faith, vision, should one start from zero as she/he approaches an issue? Is anyone completely objective?                                                             

 

We can minimize the occurrence of prejudice, stereotypes, and discrimination by external laws (against libel, hate crimes, etc.) but also by mixing with other groups and religions, emphasizing their strengths, listening to their stories, putting ourselves in their shoes.   Being selective about media, video games, reading.  Prayer, meditation, discernment of spirits, examen of consciousness help us to be honest with ourselves and our feelings.  We can also stand up and resist prejudice and discrimination when it occurs in our presence.

Even if we have had disagreements or conflicts with those of other groups or religions, we can seek or help with reconciliation.  Art Gish, Hebron Journal.  "I refuse to let anyone remain my enemy."

Suggested Readings below.  Some themes are repeated for emphasis.

Reconciliation is part of Ignatian Spirituality.

St. Ignatius himself acted as mediator between Pope Paul II and the King of Portugal. He was also able to mediate a mortal feud between the citizens of St. Angelo and those of Tivoli. We know that he was able to reconcile an estranged married couple, the Duke Asconcio Colonna and Jane of Aragon.

Those who follow the spirituality of St. Ignatius pursue a ministry of reconciliation, healing divisions. Jesus prayed that we be one as He and the Father are one. "This is how all will know you are my disciples: your love for one another." Jesus went beyond ordinary notions of love by enjoining us to love even our enemies. Scripture preaches solidarity. Great wealth existing side by side with poverty indicates a lack of solidarity in the community. "If your enemy is hungry, feed him." Romans 12.20 "The community of believers were of one heart and one mind. None of them ever claimed anything as his own; rather, everything was held in common. Acts 4.32 ff Acts 2.44 "All this has been done by God who has reconciled us to himself through Christ and has given us the ministry of reconciliation." 2 Corinthians 5.18

Jewish and originally from New York City, Deb Reich has lived in Israel for many years.  She outlines a different approach in No More Enemies, It's not the people...it's the paradigm.

A ministry of reconciliation calls for humility and forgiveness. The arrogant are not easily reconciled. Those not willing to forgive find stable relationships difficult to sustain. But forgiveness does not mean tolerating injustice. If you steal my watch, I may forgive you. I also expect my watch back. Integral justice is at the heart of our relationship to our neighbor.

Religion is the creed, code, cult of a particular denomination. Whatever one's religion, I understand faith as my relationship with God and justice as my relationship with my neighbor. The fifty persons I interviewed for my doctoral dissertation on Ignatian spirituality and justice would agree with that general understanding. In 1975 the thirty-second international congregation of the Society of Jesus placed new emphasis on joining justice to faith. Decree Four explains why the promotion of justice is an absolute requirement for the service of faith. Reconciliation within the human family and reconciliation with God go together. We can't have one without the other. What structure does Xavier have that joins Faith and Justice?

Decree 2 , No. 22 of International meeting of the Society of Jesus, Spring, 2008. ?God has created a world with diverse inhabitants, and this is good. Creation expresses the rich beauty of this lovable world: people working, laughing, and thriving together are signs that God is alive among us. (See Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, no. 106-108.) However, diversity becomes problematic when the differences between people are lived in such a way that some prosper at the expense of others who are excluded in such a way that people fight, killing each other, and are intent on destruction. Then God in Christ suffers in and with the world, which he wants to renew. It is here that we must discern our mission according to the criteria of the magis and the more universal good. (Ibid. No. 97) God is present in the darkness of life intent on making all things new. God needs collaborators in this endeavour. ?nations? beyond geographical definitions await us, ?nations? that today include those who are poor and displaced, those who are profoundly lonely, those who ignore God?s existence and those who use God as an instrument for political purposes. These are new ?nations? and we have been sent to them.?

Practicing Leadership: Principles & Applications Third Edition, Arthur Shriberg-David Shriberg-Richa Kumari. P. 9 ?Vision, the Human Condition, and Leadership? What is the goal of the leader? Does it advance humankind? Is the content (the outcome) the key? Is the vision about a process (the ?I have a dream? speech)? Many leadership books and approaches center on a vision of improving some element of the human or organizational condition. Can a leader lead if there is no goal to lead toward? In the last quarter of the twentieth century the field of visioning came into vogue. Individuals, organizations, and societies are challenged to set noble goals that enhance the quality of life for all. Leaders that both articulate and move society toward that future are widely admired. We urge our readers to create their own vision for themselves.?

P. 191 4. ?The Ability to Inspire a Shared Vision Differentiates Leaders from Other Credible Sources. Although credibility is the foundation, leaders must envision an uplifting and ennobling future. People want leaders who are honest, inspiring, competent, and forward-looking. We expect leaders to take us to places we have never been before?to have clearly in mind an attractive destination that will make the journey worthwhile. Leadership isn?t telling people what to do. Leadership is painting a picture of an exciting possibility of how we can achieve a common goal. Equally important is the leader?s capacity to enlist others to transform the vision into reality.?

"The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision. It's got to be a vision you articulate clearly and forcefully on every occasion." Fr. Theodore Hesburgh, President Emeritus of the University of Notre Dame.

Sometimes the differences within religions is greater than differences between religions.

There is a "civil war" in the Catholic Church. (See New York Times, 5/9/09 A 15;) Perhaps we are not distinguishing essentials from prudential admonitions or practices that can be changed. Perhaps our political differences are stronger than our religious convinctions.  We want unity in essentials, freedom in the fallible and uncertain, charity in everything.

 Forgiveness also includes ourselves. It is difficult to learn forgiveness of others if we can't forgive ourselves.

The Sacrament of Penance is now called the Sacrament of Reconciliation, reconciliation with God, our neighbor, and the earth.

Christians sense a oneness based in part on St. Paul's First Letter to the Corinthians 12.12-31.  "There are many different members, but one body.  The eye cannot say to the hand, 'I do not need you,' any more than the head can say to the feet, 'I do not need you.'  .  . If one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members share its joy.  You, then are the body of Christ.  Every one of you is a member of it." 

The Catholic Church in Gaudium et Spes, The Church in the Modern World, No. 92 stresses the value of unity in the midst of diversity and the value of diversity in the midst of unity:  "The Church shows itself as a sign of that amity which renders possible sincere dialogue and strengthens it.  Such a mission requires us first of all to create in the church itself mutual esteem, reverence and harmony, and to acknowledge all legitimate diversity;  in this way all who constitute the one people of God will be able to engage in ever more fruitful dialogue, whether they are pastors or other members of the faithful.  For the ties which unite the faithful together are stronger than those which separate them:  let there be unity in what is necessary, freedom in what is doubtful, and charity in everything."  Unitatis Redintegratio, Vatican II Decree on Ecumenism, No. 11  "When comparing doctrines with one another, they should remember that in Catholic doctrine there exists an order or 'hierarchy' of truths, since they vary in their relation to the foundation of the Christian faith."

Belief in the Trinity, the Incarnation, Redemption, the sacraments, are basic.  Kneeling during the Eucharistic Prayer admits of change or exception.  We are finite, fallible, a pilgrim church.  We can always grow in our understanding of our Faith.  We cannot always have absolute certitude that every aspect of a religious truth or its expression has been finalized.

Political truths have similar degrees of certitude.  We know we want to love and protect our nation and our world.  We don't always know the best way to provide security and welfare for all.


From 1777 to 1788 the original 13 sovereign states in America operated according to the Articles of Confederation.
Appointment to the Continental Congress and the funding came through the thirteen state governments which focused on their own interests. There was no way to enforce agreements under the Articles of Confederation. Boycotting the Congress when a state did not get its way was frequent. In violations of agreements under the articles seven states were printing paper money. New York had its own customs system. Lacking good ports of its own, New Jersey had to send its exports through New York or Philadelphia and to pay taxes to both Pennsylvania and New York. In 1785 Connecticut passed a law that gave its manufacturers an advantage over industries in New York and Massachusetts. New York had a tariff on Connecticut wood and New Jersey butter. Philadelphia refused to accept New Jersey money. About 2000 people were killed in a war between Pennsylvania and Connecticut.

Just as the thirteen colonies in 1787 became convinced they needed to move from a confederation to a federation, the late "most trusted man in America" Walter Cronkite knew that national sovereignty today means something new. Even though our economy and our military is still unsurpassed, the United States cannot go alone. We need to respect and value the whole person and every person. We need to value all peoples and all cultures. True openness and sharing with one another does not mean loss of individual identity but profound unity.

 

? Our first president, George Washington was not against parties, but he was against the spirit of parties. ? by this term Washington meant the attitude that one?s own faction or part was more important than the whole. . or that one?s own party?s interest were the same as the interests of the whole. .the spirit of party meant to overcome, or even destroy, rather than learn from the opposition. A reconciling force as Washington was, can help us regenerate our image of the democratic process and correct our fantasies that a marketplace of egoistic impulses somehow miraculously produces intelligence and harmony, both in the self and in society. Washingtonian democracy is not the freedom to try to destroy each other physically or philosophically or morally, but the freedom to bring one?s own best thought together with one?s best effort to listen and attend to the other.? (See Jacob Needleman, The American Soul, Rediscovering the Wisdom of the Founders, pp. 127-129)

All need to contribute to the common good.  All need to have care for one another, protect one another.

Selected History of the US and Peace
Bragdon, McCutchen, History of a Free People: Washington?s Farewell Address: Washington warned the people of the United States against permanent dislike of some nations and passionate affection for others. ?The nation which indulges an habitual hatred for some nations will be too quick to resent the actions of the country it dislikes and too apt to make concessions to the country it likes. ? Washington feared the ?spirit of party? the bitter struggle between the followers of Hamilton (the Federalists) and Jefferson and Madison (the Republicans).
p. 272 ff. In 1828 the American Peace Society advocated the abolition of war. Since the formation of a U.S Federal union of independent states was working and we were in no danger from our neighbors, it was natural for Americans to think universal peace attainable. William Ladd, successful as a ship captain and then as a farmer, devoted his entire energy to the cause of peace. Ladd agitated for a Congress of Nations with courts of international justice to settle all disputes.
339 ff. Lincoln?s Second Inaugural Address: ?with malice toward none and charity toward all, let us bind the nation?s wounds and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.?
Woodrow Wilson?s peace program had detailed points: 1. Abolish general causes of war; have open diplomacy, disarmament 2. self-determination for colonies 3. The League of Nations. Justice for all nations and peoples.
Herbert Hoover had seen the devastation and suffering of World War I. As a Quaker he believed war was morally wrong. ?I think I may say that I have witnessed as much of the horror and suffering of war as any other American. From it I have derived a deep passion for peace. Our foreign policy has one primary object, peace. We have no hates, we wish no further possessions, we harbor no military threats.? Hoover wanted to be a good neighbor to Latin America and withdrew our troops from Nicaragua. He promoted disarmament because armaments increased tax burdens and was wasteful of personnel and the means of production.
In 1928 France and the U.S. took the lead in promoting the Kellogg-Briand Treaty which attempted to ?outlaw war.? 63 nations ratified the document whereby they agreed to abandon war ?as an instrument of national policy? and to settle disputes by peaceful means. The Pact of Paris had no enforcement mechanism and did not prohibit wars in ?self-defense.?

President Barack Obama, Cairo University, Egypt, June 4, 2009: "Just as Muslims do not fit a crude stereotype, America is not the crude stereotype of a self-interested empire. .We were founded upon the ideal that all are created equal. . We are shaped by every culture, drawn from every end of the Earth, and dedicated to a simple concept; E pluribus unum, 'Out of many, one."

Unity does not mean everyone must agree on non-essential points. Citizens are diverse in race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, disabilities, etc., etc. On the other hand, all must follow civil positive law unless it violates the moral natural law. Segregation was civil law in the South until Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. and others worked to change these immoral laws. But diversity does not imply that anyone can murder, steal, etc. When Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr wrote the Letter From a Birmingham Jail, he quoted St. Peter in the Acts of the Apostles 4.19.  Responding to the authorities who demanded that the apostles not preach the message of Jesus,  St. Peter proclaimed:  "Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God's sight for us to obey you rather than God."  Rev. King distinguished the moral law or natural law from civil or positive law.  When he thus practiced civil disobedience, his conscience determined segregation laws were immoral, against the moral or natural law.  Rev. Martin Luther King had great respect for civil law and did not rush quickly to judgement and practice civil disobedience without discernment and reflection.  But segregation laws in the South were grossly unfair and demeaning.

 The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision. It's got to be a vision you articulate clearly and forcefully on every occasion." Fr. Theodore Hesburgh, President Emeritus of the University of Notre Dame.

 

Is a reasoned or faith conviction different from bias? After years of study, experience, faith, vision, should one start from zero as she/he approaches an issue? Is anyone completely objective?

We need to listen to all voices and listen well. One answer to self-deception is what process theologieans like Fr. Joseph Brachen, S.J. call intersubjectivity. "Our best chance for being truthful and objective in what we say and do is to be willing to share our thoughts and desires with other people and to listen to their response, to learn what they think and how they feel about the same issues. Through the give-and take of dialogue with other people, we will gradually come to see the inevitable limits of our own customary perspective on life. In listening carefully to the views of other people, especially those from a different cultural background, we will come to recognize our unconscious biases and prejudices in a way that would be virtually impossible simply through extended self-reflection on our part." Christianity and Process Thought, Spirituality For a Changing World, pp. 66, 67/

Another answer is to follow Ignatian Spirituality, especially his Discernment of Spirits. (See Ignatian Spirituality and Theological Reflection on this web-site).

Faith, religion, reflection, meditation, examen of consciousness are helps in minimizing prejudice, discrimination, stereotypes.

Envisioning structures can also help to minimize prejudice.

  Clarifying a Vision

I have a combat infantry medal from service in General Patton?s Third Army in Europe. I  also served in the Philippine Islands. I emerged from the war with the conviction there had to be a better way. I knew not what that better way would be, but I felt that becoming a Jesuit priest was a way I could search toward a peace with justice.

As I started to educate and work for a peace with justice so many immediate peace and justice emergencies crowded upon me, I couldn?t see the forest for the trees. I decided I needed a long-range vision to give me perspective. Once I had a vision, I could prioritize appropriate steps toward the vision. Without a vision I found it hard to decide where to begin or what to do next.

An integral part of Ignatian spirituality is freedom from domination by inner insecurities, a freedom to have eyes wide open to what?s really happening, a freedom to think new thoughts, a freedom to dream, a freedom to ?make believe.? Followers of St. Ignatius today strive for that same inner freedom, freedom from domination by addictions and negative drives, a positive spiritual freedom to imagine a world with structures different from what we now experience.

I developed my vision over the last fifty years and corroborated it during my doctoral studies by fifty extended interviews with those committed to faith and justice. In my vision there are five major pieces, or pillars, that we need to focus on to build a just world. The basic fundamentals of the vision are the vision of Jesus. It's not hard to conclude that Jesus wants a faith-filled and just world.

(To see further detailed development of any of the pillars below see the appropriate section on my web-site.)

The first pillar of a new world order is to develop and begin to live a global ethic. Since most people are religious, a global peace with justice will be difficult if the different religions cannot get along with one another. Religions are exploring today what they have in common. We need to establish world-wide moral guidelines as we move together toward a common future of peace. The World Parliament of Religions has declared we are all interdependent. ?Each of us depends on the well-being of the whole. . .We consider humankind our family.? Shouldn?t we acknowledge ourselves as citizens of our country, but also as citizens of the world? If on a local and even a global level, we had a consensus that ordinary health care is a basic human right, wouldn't that be a powerful force leading to ordinary health care for each human person? Germs spread sometimes causing epidemics. The health of one is the health of all.

The issue of employment as a human right is another basic issue that religions could address. Workers are often prejudiced against immigrants who they believe are taking their jobs. There has been discrimination against Hispanics, blacks, women, native Americans, in regard to employment and equal pay for equal work. I suggest Jesuit universities, indeed all universities, should teach and research in an interdisciplinary way employment as a human right.  (See Universal Declaration of Human Rights, No. 23)
 

The Vision of Hope DVD on this web-site shows President Roosevelt advocating an economic bill of rights. His wife Eleanor after World War II negotiated the Universal Declaration of Human Rights passed by the United Nations in 1948. Article 23: ?Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favorable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.? Subsequent UN covenants further elaborate on this right. Richard Lewis Siegel, Employment and Human Rights, the International Dimension, gives the history of the right and the difficulties of implementation. A secular book, he cites the positive influence of the Catholic Church. Work is a local, regional, state, national, and world issue. It is an economic issue, but also a moral issue.

Pope John Paul II, On Human Work, discusses employment in No. 18. ?We must first direct our attention to a fundamental issue, the question of finding work, suitable employment for all who are capable of it. The opposite issue of a just and right situation is unemployment, the lack of work. All must act against unemployment, which in all cases is an evil and which when it reaches a certain level, can become a real social disaster.?

Research has shown that unemployment leads to the use of tobacco, alcohol, other drugs, domestic and child abuse, divorce, suicide, and crime.

The New Dictionary of Catholic Social Thought Employment and Unemployment, quotes Economic Justice for All of the US Catholic Bishops: ?Full employment is the foundation of a just economy. The most urgent priority for domestic economic policy is the creation of new jobs with adequate pay and decent working conditions. We must make it possible as a nation for everyone who is seeking a job to find employment within a reasonable amount of time. . human work has special dignity and is a key to achieving justice in society. Employment is a basic right.?

We add the second pillar of a new world building when we create a culture of non-violence, healthy and positive relationships, persuasion rather than coercion. If we are treated unjustly, we can strike back violently or we can be prudent and simply keep quiet. Imaging a third alternative, active non-violence is an historic development on a par in the evolutionary process with the breakthrough to intelligence. It will change our future in a radical way.

Non-violence has many components, education, especially peace education, conflict resolution skills, appropriate laws, intelligent and reflective voting, prayer and meditation, a consistent ethic of life.

The third pillar of a new world structure is promotion of a culture where basic human rights are second nature. God did not create us to be essentially frustrated. Natural human rights are pleas to one another for our basic material, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual needs. The new Constitution of South Africa gives each person the civil right to the exercise of the natural, moral right to shelter, to health care, to food, water, education; the civic right to live in a healthy environment. On a more widespread basis natural human rights need to be codified in positive civil law and made part of state, national, and a world constitution.

Dr. Joseph Wronka acknowledges some differences in cultures in regard to human rights, but insists on a basic core of human rights that we have in common.

The fourth pillar of a new world building are economic structures through which the people can participate in policy decisions. Made in the likeness of God, we have the right and responsibility to make our own decisions on basic fundamental issues. We can control corporations externally by laws and agencies. We need legally to expand the bottom line of corporations to include care for the common good. We can better control corporations by ownership. The worker-owned cooperatives such as Mondragon are democratically structured. Rather than a limited number of large conglomerates, there should be widespread ownership of the means of production, the factories and farms. This would be another check and balance to government at all levels.

The fifth pillar of a new world structure is democratic world order. The Catholic Catechism urges us to pray every day that we be free of the ?ancient bondage of war.? Since law distinguishes terrorists from the innocent and determines degrees of guilt?something bombs cannot do?law is a more humane way to provide security. Although the UN has made many important strides toward a peace with justice, the present UN is only a confederation. A stronger, more democratic body needs to be imagined. Although law needs to be more humane and infused by the Spirit, law can bring us order, stability, and security. One of the greatest men of the 20th century, Pope John XXIII, made a democratic international structure a moral imperative.

A democratic World Authority, economic democracy, a culture of basic human rights, non-violence, a global ethic are pillars of a new world mansion, a mansion more in accord with God's Word. Details of course need to be worked out and developed by small faith-filled communities, but God certainly wants a more humane world.

How do we proceed toward the vision? There is no way to peace. Peace is the way. Some seem to think if we bring God into it, we don?t need research, dialogue, and communal discernment. We need to get in touch with our light and dark graced stories. How has God loved us in good times and in bad? How have we taken that love to others?

We need to expand our experience by contact with the materially poor and marginalized. When we see injustice we need to ask ?why?? We need to do research and social analysis. ?Who is making the decision? Who is benefiting from the decision? Who is paying the cost of the decision?

We need to engage in theological reflection, having the values of Scripture and the churches interface with the world in which we live. We pray at Catholic Mass: ?Keep the church alert in faith to the signs of the times and eager to accept the challenge of the gospel.?

Writers as far apart ideologically as St. Ignatius of Loyola and the French philosopher Jean Paul Sartre agree that we need to be honest with ourselves. St. Ignatius developed skills in discerning positive drives within us from negative inner movements.

Christian Life Community embodies this process today. Small religious communities need to make decisions for social action within a definite time line. None of us can do everything. All of us can do something. We need to evaluate how faithful we have been to the process. We will not always experience immediate external success. If we strengthen the local church, we can protect the larger Church from excessive over-centralization. The Church will not grow unless all are invited to develop church life and teaching. Unity in essentials, responsible freedom in the fallible and uncertain, charity in all. None of us have absolute certitude in all things! We walk humbly together toward the truth of Jesus, listening to others even those with whom we disagree.

We have before us life and death. Let us choose a globalization of the Spirit, a globalization of hope. Let us choose life.Let us then look ahead at the year 2034 and again try to clarify the vision of what a decent future would look like. As we look ahead, we need to ignore obstacles at least for now, and picture what the minimum essentials of the beginning of peace would be. Do the elements of peace I have described blend and become interconnected? The elements of a plan for peace are not new. But I think the connection between the parts of the revolution and how the sections of the plan are interrelated is not a popular concept.

A vision sets goals for what needs to be done. A vision is a picture that can be used to motivate. Although history is the story of the past, a vision of utopia is the truth of tomorrow. As I have said, unless we have a vision we cannot see the forest for the trees. We can get so lost in details and the myriad of issues that we lose a sense of the larger picture. When the astronauts went into space, they looked back and got a different view of our planet earth. If we have a vision, the vision helps us to determine our priorities now as we journey toward our goals. Otherwise our agenda is determined by those who oppose growth and change.

If a couple had the freedom to design and build their own house, their first thought would be to create what would be at least an adequate shelter to meet their needs. They would not begin their design by wondering whether they had enough money to pay for the materials. They would design a house suitable for themselves, and then try to examine whether they had the financial resources or could raise them. If their financial resources were meager, that would influence the final design. But if they had a defeatist attitude in the beginning, they could not plan for a house suitable to their needs. The couple would want a house that would at least keep them dry when it rains, warm when it's cold. In the first world they would probably want electricity and running water.

We must design a plan for a world that is at least livable, then search for the resources to build it. I think that together and with God we are more powerful than the forces of evil in our world. Thus I feel we should picture what the minimum would be for a world of peace with justice and then search for the means to build that peace. The companion of Dorothy Day, Peter Maurin, always called for clarification of thought. I suggest that ignoring obstacles we clarify our vision of what a peaceful world would be like. When we dream alone, it remains a dream. When we dream together, the dream becomes reality. Below is how I think the elements of a peace with justice blend together.

Without basic human rights, the world does not really have peace in a meaningful sense. Without basic human rights, especially economic rights, the human family does not have the minimum essentials necessary for human life. God did not create us to be essentially frustrated. As a human race, we need to reach the starting line. Individuals and groups have indeed made remarkable progress in the arts and sciences. In a sense, technology has brought many of us together. But the human race is a whole. If one person lacks the exercise of her/his basic human rights, as a human family I do not think we have reached the starting line. In reality,there are millions who lack their basic human rights. Indeed, since we live in a world of such technological abundance, giving subsistence to each human person is the least we can do.

Yet the World Bank estimates that in addition to the thirty children already dying per hour, the global economic crisis is causing an additional twenty-two children to die per hour. It's possible there will be an additional 400,000 child deaths, or an extra child dying every 79 seconds. The group of 20 of the world's "leaders" will decide how many of the poor will die. The poor are not represented on any summit. The poor never approved any bad loans or risky investments. The 500 richest people in the world earn more than the 416 million poorest people. (Nicholas D. Kristof, New York Times, April 2, 2009, A 27. I ask whether this picture can be part of a civilized world?  Until we can share and cooperate in a more rational and loving way, have we really reached even the beginning of a civilized world?

Without a democratic world authority, basic human rights are not possible. A single nation state or a group of nations states are incapable of judging fairly or acting promptly. Without a global democratic political entity, we do not have freedom from war, from economic oppression, or environmental pollution. If it is democratically chosen with sufficient checks and balances, an international governing body, and only an international governing body, can insure peace, economic justice, human rights, and a healthy earth for all nations. The present United Nations is not such a body, but it is a beginning.

Moreover, without common security, I don't think national, regional, state, and local governments can operate properly. National governments are being asked to do what they are incapable of. This hinders their ability to do in an adequate manner what they were created for.

Without active non-violence, we will not reach or maintain genuine peace, basic human rights, or international law and order. New structures and new values will work only if we work at it. Education is a key. Being intelligent, thoughtful citizens is a key. If enough people really want peace, it will happen. If we are lazy or fatalists, our attitude will become a self-fulfilling prophecy and nothing will happen, certainly nothing to stop our present slide toward selfishness and apathy.

Actually, there are more people who choose non-violence than we realize. Objections to non-violence usually come in the form of extreme examples. If our nation is overrun by a hostile army which is pillaging, raping, and killing civilians, what do we do? Non-violence has to be tried from the beginning. We can't expect non-violence to solve immediately acute problems that have festered for decades, generations, even centuries.

Without economic democracy, we will not achieve or maintain basic human rights. Political democracy is not enough to insure basic freedom. Indeed is genuine political democracy possible without economic democracy? If only a wealthy few control the media, those few will also control politics. Economic freedom is a basic human right. We have simply been slow to acknowledge the need for the people to be able to make crucial policy decisions concerning the farms and factories.

Economic democracy could take many forms. I'm not ready to say it would mean any one structure or practice. At the very least it would mean there are no hungry or homeless people. At the most it would mean widespread ownership of the factories and farms, transportation, and the media.  I like the emphasis of Dr. Gar Alperovitz on cooperatives as a viable way for people to have more say about economic decisions.

I think the principle of subsidiarity needs to be followed in the economic as well as the political sphere. This would result I believe in much more local community ownership of the means of production rather than large, overly centralized conglomerates.

Without religion and faith, violence and disintegration are bound to prevail. The forces of evil outside of us and within us are enormous. But if we are open to God's grace, nothing is impossible to God. Where sin abounds, there grace does more abound. We need a vision. We also need a way to the vision. Communities of faith and action lend support, moderation, analysis, and prayer.

Here I am bold enough to proclaim that Ignatian spirituality can help in clarifying our vision. Ignatian spirituality can help small groups to assimilate our past, be more genuinely present, and see better toward the future. These small groups can then communicate their vision to the larger community.

Each element of a revolution of values is necessary. Promoting one without the other won't work. If we put the elements of a radical change together, we can have a genuine peace with justice.

I have sketched a vision for peace. Those working for peace can follow this vision and way of proceeding, modifying or changing it as they see fit. If there's any defect in my vision, I feel it's too minimal. I think we expect too little of ourselves.

There are millions of people hungry and malnourished in our world. Related to hunger is the alarming number of unemployed and underemployed. All of us live under the threat of war and on an earth which environmentalists say is deteriorating in unacceptable and unnecessary ways. I have sketched basic structures that I think will alleviate world problems. It's not that there aren't people of good will in our world. Nor are we lacking in intelligent women and men. What is lacking are structures adequate to make this a human world. It's hard to avoid indigestion when we eat with a sword suspended over our heads, a sword that hangs supported only by a thread. People who live under threat of war and deterioration of our earth are not free people.

The present structures of our world include the nation state with almost absolute sovereignty and an very unbalanced system of power in which only a few have vast amounts of wealth. I don't think it takes a genius to see our world needs global democratic authority, economic democracy, and the exercise of basic human rights by each human person.

Perhaps I am too timid or conservative. Perhaps my sights are too low. But working together as one human family I think we can reach at least the beginning. The deepening of our faith suffuses all our efforts to achieve peace. All is interconnected. If we have a strong relationship with God, we will reach out to our neighbor. If we love our neighbor and the earth, we will examine any structures that may be oppressing our neighbor or damaging our earth. Since the effort to make this a better world is at times overwhelming, faith and discernment can support us in the struggle.

"I saw a new heavens and a new earth. . I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with humankind, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!. . .To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son." Revelation 21.3-7

 

Eventually you may want to join the Vision of Hope Team below:

                                                            Vision of Hope Team

Purpose:  In joy and in the Spirit to favor love over hate, hope over despair, faith over doubt.  To envision internal and external structures that will make our planet sustainable and our human family more ethical and moral; practicing active non-violence, waging peace, seeking to establish security and justice; insisting on basic human rights; working toward economic democracy and committed to forming a democratic world federation to act as a legal governing body for the Family of Nations---(See Love in Truth No. 67 Pope Benedict XVI www.vatican.va also http://www.zenit.org/article-33718?l=english ZE11102402 - 2011-10-24 Permalink: http://www.zenit.org/article-33718?l=english
PONTIFICAL COUNCIL FOR JUSTICE AND PEACE ON THE GLOBAL ECONOMY)
  Envisioning, going forward, searching for old and new ways and structures in a balanced and peaceful manner, through collaboration, negotiation and mediation to promote, refine, and implement a vision of hope."

Membership:  Any person willing to educate themselves and others and then work in their own situation and in their own way to implement a vision of hope in accord with one's time, energy, relationships, and commitments.

For my full vision see other parts of this web-site www.xavier.edu/frben 

 

Fear and frenzy permeated the village of Gubbio because a wolf was devouring the livestock. The townspeople feared they or their children would be next. The wolf was hungry. St. Francis of Asissi spoke to the wolf softly, fed him, and directed his dumbfounded audience to feed him regularly. 

There are wolves in our world that howl without and devour within. When we are at peace with ourselves through prayer, our negative emotions no longer dominate. ?Hi fear. There you are again.? ?Hi terrorists. Are you hungry?? ?Hi stranger, I welcome you.?  Not of course to give power to exploit but to give a basic human life.

Wouldn't it make more sense to have an economic system with full production, full employment, and price stability in necessities? Economists like Dr. Gar Alperovitz say we can.

Wouldn't it make more sense to have a global ethic, non-violence, basic human rights, economic democracy, and a democratic world federation?

Wouldn't it make more sense to eliminate nuclear weapons which can be stolen, detonated accidentally, statistically certain to be used if we keep them indefinitely, expensive to maintain? (See Tad Daley, Apocalypse Never)

As St. Paul says, where sin abounds there grace does more abound.

By dialoguing and visioning together, perhaps we can clarify what a democratic world order would look like if we had it. Is democratic world order absolutely necessary? Is it possible? What is the teaching of the Catholic Church and other religions on Democratic World Order? Is Democratic World Order part of a Consistent Ethic of Life? What is the light graced story in our pilgrimage to Democratic World Order? What is the way forward toward making our dream a reality?

Can We Have Peace without Adequate Structures?

Friends in Christian Life Community ask me whether emphasizing non-violence locally can spread until we have world peace?  Three July 2009 events helped me to conclude that though eminently praiseworthy, non-violence by itself is not enough.

There are many forms of non-violence, prayer, meditation, meaningful dialogue, conflict resolution, arbitration, education, voting intelligently, giving input to our public representatives, getting basic human rights into our legal and constitutional structures, civil disobedience, arbitration, and many others.  But can these many forms of non-violence work without adequate structures?

On July 8th, 2009, Pope Benedict XVI issued an encyclical, Love in Truth.  On July 17th Walter Cronkite passed to the next life.   On July 31st the Society of Jesus world-wide and their partners in over 160 nations, Christian Life Community, celebrated the Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola  At first these three events may seem unrelated.  But Benedict XVI, Walter Cronkite, and St. Ignatius point us to a major issue facing our human family which affects all of the other issues, a democratic world federation.  Is it possible to say we?re non-violent if we don?t even discuss ending the war system?  

The war system is eating us alive!  It's sucking up our human and material resources. A combat veteran myself, I have the greatest respect for those who serve in the armed forces.  There is a sense of discipline, community, organization.  When there is a natural disaster, the national guard can react quickly and efficiently.  However, it?s time to end the war system.  The war system is dangerous, expensive, wasteful of human and natural resources, irrational, unnecessary.  Look at what percentage of taxes goes to supporting military security as opposed to education, health, the environment, research into healthy food and potable water.  Federal, state, local budgets are a scandal.

Where Do Our Income Tax Dollars Go? For each dollar of federal income tax we paid in 2009, the government spent about: 33¢  Pentagon spending for current & past wars
27¢ Supporting the Economy
17¢ Health Care
11¢ Responding to Poverty
9¢ General Government
2¢ Energy,Science and Environment
1¢ Diplomacy, Development and War Prevention

"For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."Matthew 6:21 The federal budget is a reflection of our country?s moral values. If this budget is out of balance with your values, please tell your representative and senators. War Is Not the Answer!

Look at the way the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq have not only killed and wounded many soldiers but has affected their mental health!  There are four million Iraqi refugees.  More civilians have been killed and wounded in recent "wars" than military personnel.  Many active soldiers and veterans have committed suicide or seriously contemplated committing suicide.

There are Christians who believe that to work toward a world federation before Christ comes again is the work of the devil.  An Episcopalian, Cronkite responded, ?If that?s true, put me at the devil?s right hand.?

Benedict XVI proceeds from theology and philosophy.  Cronkite concludes the necessity of a democratic world federation from experience in, and observation of, world events.  The Society of Jesus and Christian Life Community follow Jesus and Christian leaders.

Benedict XVI states that the basic form of poverty is isolation, not being able to love or not being loved, closing in on oneself, thinking one is self-sufficient.  Some go to the opposite extreme, considering  themselves too insignificant to belong to the community.

There is much interaction now on a world-wide basis.  We need an aha! moment when we recognize we are one human family.  No one can go it alone.  All of us have talents we can contribute to the common good.

We grow through our relations with others and with God.  Peoples grow in relationship with other peoples.  The family does not submerge the identities of its individual members.   The unity of the human family does not submerge the identities of individuals, peoples and cultures.  Rather individuals and peoples can only grow together when there is security, sharing, and giving of themselves to others and to the common good.

Each person of the Christian Trinity gives themselves completely to one another in a unique and absolute unity.  Yet each Person remains distinct in profound interpenetration.

Jesus prays that ?they may be one even as we are one.? John 17:22.  The human family can only be enriched by looking toward the Trinity.  True openness and sharing with one another does not mean loss of individual identity but profound unity.

If a religion leads to selfishness, cutting oneself off from the neighbor or the community, we know this is a false religion.  Respect for the whole person and every person is the criterion for evaluating cultures and religions.


In the wake of President Barack Obama?s health care address on Sept. 9th, 2009, allow me to share a few  thoughts for your consideration.  Basic health care is part of the First Week of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius.  Basic health care is part of the Unum, the unity in the diversity of our nation.

The President is correct in that ordinary health care is a moral issue, a basic human economic right that should be in our legal state and federal constitutions, as stated in my third pillar.

 The attitude of the US people toward providing ordinary health care for each human person is an important sign of our character as a nation.

The President is  very wrong that our goal is to see that everyone is covered fairly by giant insurance companies who are driven to make money consciously or unconsciously from the vulnerability of the sick and elderly.  It is said that 30% of health care monies go for insurance company and pharmaceutical company profits.  4% goes to Medicare administration.  Giant insurance and pharmaceutical companies, agribusiness, and the corporate media are frequently more powerful than the US President, Congress, and state governments.  They are too big to be regulated by our weak laws.  They often find a way to avoid the law.. Economic democracy is imperative as stated in my fourth pillar.

 Our goal is to provide ordinary health care for each human person.  Many human persons in the US are dying before their time because they are not getting ordinary health care which includes healthy food.  (I suggest you read Michael Pollen?s article in the New York Times for Sept. 10th, 2009.)

Workers from other nations have the responsibility and the right to support their families.  They are the victims of an immoral global economy.  They should not be dismissed as less than human, calling them "illegal aliens."  We should change our immoral legal restrictions on workers from other nations.  They are following God's law which is higher than immoral human law.

The right to employment is also a basic economic right which should be in our legal and constitutional structures.  If we observed this moral law, the fear that workers from other nations would impact on our own security would be lessened.

 As a nation we do have to be able to distinguish ordinary basic care from exotic, highly sophisticated and extremely expensive procedures.  We have the right and responsibility to take ordinary care of our health, but St. Ignatius in the Principle and Foundation says we should be spiritually free to accept a shorter life rather than a longer life if that leads to God?s greater glory.  Death is a result of our group sin.  We should work to make death more humane and easier, but it would be difficult to eliminate the fact of death at this time.

Why is the single-payer system not on the table for discussion?  As a nation aren?t we spiritually free enough to dialogue about a structure that makes good sense and is successful in other nations?

I realize that the above is not where our nation is.  But I feel that God calls me to say it like I think it is.   When we aim an arrow at a target, we have to aim a little above the bull?s-eye in order to hit it.

 

 

Pope Benedict XVI Love in Truth July 2009

CHAPTER FIVE: THE COOPERATION OF THE HUMAN FAMILY

From vatican.va

53. One of the deepest forms of poverty a person can experience is isolation. If we look closely at other kinds of poverty, including material forms, we see that they are born from isolation, from not being loved or from difficulties in being able to love. Poverty is often produced by a rejection of God's love, by man's basic and tragic tendency to close in on himself, thinking himself to be self-sufficient or merely an insignificant and ephemeral fact, a ?stranger? in a random universe. Man is alienated when he is alone, when he is detached from reality, when he stops thinking and believing in a foundation [125]. All of humanity is alienated when too much trust is placed in merely human projects, ideologies and false utopias [126]. Today humanity appears much more interactive than in the past: this shared sense of being close to one another must be transformed into true communion. The development of peoples depends, above all, on a recognition that the human race is a single family working together in true communion, not simply a group of subjects who happen to live side by side [127].

Pope Paul VI noted that ?the world is in trouble because of the lack of thinking? [128]. He was making an observation, but also expressing a wish: a new trajectory of thinking is needed in order to arrive at a better understanding of the implications of our being one family; interaction among the peoples of the world calls us to embark upon this new trajectory, so that integration can signify solidarity [129] rather than marginalization. Thinking of this kind requires a deeper critical evaluation of the category of relation. This is a task that cannot be undertaken by the social sciences alone, insofar as the contribution of disciplines such as metaphysics and theology is needed if man's transcendent dignity is to be properly understood.

As a spiritual being, the human creature is defined through interpersonal relations. The more authentically he or she lives these relations, the more his or her own personal identity matures. It is not by isolation that man establishes his worth, but by placing himself in relation with others and with God. Hence these relations take on fundamental importance. The same holds true for peoples as well. A metaphysical understanding of the relations between persons is therefore of great benefit for their development. In this regard, reason finds inspiration and direction in Christian revelation, according to which the human community does not absorb the individual, annihilating his autonomy, as happens in the various forms of totalitarianism, but rather values him all the more because the relation between individual and community is a relation between one totality and another [130]. Just as a family does not submerge the identities of its individual members, just as the Church rejoices in each ?new creation? (Gal 6:15; 2 Cor 5:17) incorporated by Baptism into her living Body, so too the unity of the human family does not submerge the identities of individuals, peoples and cultures, but makes them more transparent to each other and links them more closely in their legitimate diversity.

54. The theme of development can be identified with the inclusion-in-relation of all individuals and peoples within the one community of the human family, built in solidarity on the basis of the fundamental values of justice and peace. This perspective is illuminated in a striking way by the relationship between the Persons of the Trinity within the one divine Substance. The Trinity is absolute unity insofar as the three divine Persons are pure relationality. The reciprocal transparency among the divine Persons is total and the bond between each of them complete, since they constitute a unique and absolute unity. God desires to incorporate us into this reality of communion as well: ?that they may be one even as we are one? (Jn 17:22). The Church is a sign and instrument of this unity [131]. Relationships between human beings throughout history cannot but be enriched by reference to this divine model. In particular, in the light of the revealed mystery of the Trinity, we understand that true openness does not mean loss of individual identity but profound interpenetration. This also emerges from the common human experiences of love and truth. Just as the sacramental love of spouses unites them spiritually in ?one flesh? (Gen 2:24; Mt 19:5; Eph 5:31) and makes out of the two a real and relational unity, so in an analogous way truth unites spirits and causes them to think in unison, attracting them as a unity to itself.

55. The Christian revelation of the unity of the human race presupposes a metaphysical interpretation of the ?humanum? in which relationality is an essential element. Other cultures and religions teach brotherhood and peace and are therefore of enormous importance to integral human development. Some religious and cultural attitudes, however, do not fully embrace the principle of love and truth and therefore end up retarding or even obstructing authentic human development. There are certain religious cultures in the world today that do not oblige men and women to live in communion but rather cut them off from one other in a search for individual well-being, limited to the gratification of psychological desires. Furthermore, a certain proliferation of different religious ?paths?, attracting small groups or even single individuals, together with religious syncretism, can give rise to separation and disengagement. One possible negative effect of the process of globalization is the tendency to favor this kind of syncretism [132] by encouraging forms of ?religion? that, instead of bringing people together, alienate them from one another and distance them from reality. At the same time, some religious and cultural traditions persist which ossify society in rigid social groupings, in magical beliefs that fail to respect the dignity of the person, and in attitudes of subjugation to occult powers. In these contexts, love and truth have difficulty asserting themselves, and authentic development is impeded.

For this reason, while it may be true that development needs the religions and cultures of different peoples, it is equally true that adequate discernment is needed. Religious freedom does not mean religious indifferentism, nor does it imply that all religions are equal [133]. Discernment is needed regarding the contribution of cultures and religions, especially on the part of those who wield political power, if the social community is to be built up in a spirit of respect for the common good. Such discernment has to be based on the criterion of charity and truth. Since the development of persons and peoples is at stake, this discernment will have to take account of the need for emancipation and inclusivity, in the context of a truly universal human community. ?The whole man and all men? is also the criterion for evaluating cultures and religions. Christianity, the religion of the ?God who has a human face? [134], contains this very criterion within itself.

56. The Christian religion and other religions can offer their contribution to development only if God has a place in the public realm, specifically in regard to its cultural, social, economic, and particularly its political dimensions. The Church's social doctrine came into being in order to claim ?citizenship status? for the Christian religion [135]. Denying the right to profess one's religion in public and the right to bring the truths of faith to bear upon public life has negative consequences for true development. The exclusion of religion from the public square ? and, at the other extreme, religious fundamentalism ? hinders an encounter between persons and their collaboration for the progress of humanity. Public life is sapped of its motivation and politics takes on a domineering and aggressive character. Human rights risk being ignored either because they are robbed of their transcendent foundation or because personal freedom is not acknowledged. Secularism and fundamentalism exclude the possibility of fruitful dialogue and effective cooperation between reason and religious faith. Reason always stands in need of being purified by faith: this also holds true for political reason, which must not consider itself omnipotent. For its part, religion always needs to be purified by reason in order to show its authentically human face. Any breach in this dialogue comes only at an enormous price to human development.

57. Fruitful dialogue between faith and reason cannot but render the work of charity more effective within society, and it constitutes the most appropriate framework for promoting fraternal collaboration between believers and non-believers in their shared commitment to working for justice and the peace of the human family. In the Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et Spes, the Council fathers asserted that ?believers and unbelievers agree almost unanimously that all things on earth should be ordered towards man as to their centre and summit? [136]. For believers, the world derives neither from blind chance nor from strict necessity, but from God's plan. This is what gives rise to the duty of believers to unite their efforts with those of all men and women of good will, with the followers of other religions and with non-believers, so that this world of ours may effectively correspond to the divine plan: living as a family under the Creator's watchful eye. A particular manifestation of charity and a guiding criterion for fraternal cooperation between believers and non-believers is undoubtedly the principle of subsidiarity [137], an expression of inalienable human freedom. Subsidiarity is first and foremost a form of assistance to the human person via the autonomy of intermediate bodies. Such assistance is offered when individuals or groups are unable to accomplish something on their own, and it is always designed to achieve their emancipation, because it fosters freedom and participation through assumption of responsibility. Subsidiarity respects personal dignity by recognizing in the person a subject who is always capable of giving something to others. By considering reciprocity as the heart of what it is to be a human being, subsidiarity is the most effective antidote against any form of all-encompassing welfare state. It is able to take account both of the manifold articulation of plans ? and therefore of the plurality of subjects ? as well as the coordination of those plans. Hence the principle of subsidiarity is particularly well-suited to managing globalization and directing it towards authentic human development. In order not to produce a dangerous universal power of a tyrannical nature, the governance of globalization must be marked by subsidiarity, articulated into several layers and involving different levels that can work together. Globalization certainly requires authority, insofar as it poses the problem of a global common good that needs to be pursued. This authority, however, must be organized in a subsidiary and stratified way [138], if it is not to infringe upon freedom and if it is to yield effective results in practice.

8. The principle of subsidiarity must remain closely linked to the principle of solidarity and vice versa, since the former without the latter gives way to social privatism, while the latter without the former gives way to paternalist social assistance that is demeaning to those in need. This general rule must also be taken broadly into consideration when addressing issues concerning international development aid. Such aid, whatever the donors' intentions, can sometimes lock people into a state of dependence and even foster situations of localized oppression and exploitation in the receiving country. Economic aid, in order to be true to its purpose, must not pursue secondary objectives. It must be distributed with the involvement not only of the governments of receiving countries, but also local economic agents and the bearers of culture within civil society, including local Churches. Aid programmes must increasingly acquire the characteristics of participation and completion from the grass roots. Indeed, the most valuable resources in countries receiving development aid are human resources: herein lies the real capital that needs to accumulate in order to guarantee a truly autonomous future for the poorest countries. It should also be remembered that, in the economic sphere, the principal form of assistance needed by developing countries is that of allowing and encouraging the gradual penetration of their products into international markets, thus making it possible for these countries to participate fully in international economic life. Too often in the past, aid has served to create only fringe markets for the products of these donor countries. This was often due to a lack of genuine demand for the products in question: it is therefore necessary to help such countries improve their products and adapt them more effectively to existing demand. Furthermore, there are those who fear the effects of competition through the importation of products ? normally agricultural products ? from economically poor countries. Nevertheless, it should be remembered that for such countries, the possibility of marketing their products is very often what guarantees their survival in both the short and long term. Just and equitable international trade in agricultural goods can be beneficial to everyone, both to suppliers and to customers. For this reason, not only is commercial orientation needed for production of this kind, but also the establishment of international trade regulations to support it and stronger financing for development in order to increase the productivity of these economies.

59. Cooperation for development must not be concerned exclusively with the economic dimension: it offers a wonderful opportunity for encounter between cultures and peoples. If the parties to cooperation on the side of economically developed countries ? as occasionally happens ? fail to take account of their own or others' cultural identity, or the human values that shape it, they cannot enter into meaningful dialogue with the citizens of poor countries. If the latter, in their turn, are uncritically and indiscriminately open to every cultural proposal, they will not be in a position to assume responsibility for their own authentic development [139]. Technologically advanced societies must not confuse their own technological development with a presumed cultural superiority, but must rather rediscover within themselves the oft-forgotten virtues which made it possible for them to flourish throughout their history. Evolving societies must remain faithful to all that is truly human in their traditions, avoiding the temptation to overlay them automatically with the mechanisms of a globalized technological civilization. In all cultures there are examples of ethical convergence, some isolated, some interrelated, as an expression of the one human nature, willed by the Creator; the tradition of ethical wisdom knows this as the natural law [140]. This universal moral law provides a sound basis for all cultural, religious and political dialogue, and it ensures that the multi-faceted pluralism of cultural diversity does not detach itself from the common quest for truth, goodness and God. Thus adherence to the law etched on human hearts is the precondition for all constructive social cooperation. Every culture has burdens from which it must be freed and shadows from which it must emerge. The Christian faith, by becoming incarnate in cultures and at the same time transcending them, can help them grow in universal brotherhood and solidarity, for the advancement of global and community development.

60. In the search for solutions to the current economic crisis, development aid for poor countries must be considered a valid means of creating wealth for all. What aid programme is there that can hold out such significant growth prospects ? even from the point of view of the world economy ? as the support of populations that are still in the initial or early phases of economic development? From this perspective, more economically developed nations should do all they can to allocate larger portions of their gross domestic product to development aid, thus respecting the obligations that the international community has undertaken in this regard. One way of doing so is by reviewing their internal social assistance and welfare policies, applying the principle of subsidiarity and creating better integrated welfare systems, with the active participation of private individuals and civil society. In this way, it is actually possible to improve social services and welfare programmes, and at the same time to save resources ? by eliminating waste and rejecting fraudulent claims ? which could then be allocated to international solidarity. A more devolved and organic system of social solidarity, less bureaucratic but no less coordinated, would make it possible to harness much dormant energy, for the benefit of solidarity between peoples.

One possible approach to development aid would be to apply effectively what is known as fiscal subsidiarity, allowing citizens to decide how to allocate a portion of the taxes they pay to the State. Provided it does not degenerate into the promotion of special interests, this can help to stimulate forms of welfare solidarity from below, with obvious benefits in the area of solidarity for development as well.

61. Greater solidarity at the international level is seen especially in the ongoing promotion ? even in the midst of economic crisis ? of greater access to education, which is at the same time an essential precondition for effective international cooperation. The term ?education? refers not only to classroom teaching and vocational training ? both of which are important factors in development ? but to the complete formation of the person. In this regard, there is a problem that should be highlighted: in order to educate, it is necessary to know the nature of the human person, to know who he or she is. The increasing prominence of a relativistic understanding of that nature presents serious problems for education, especially moral education, jeopardizing its universal extension. Yielding to this kind of relativism makes everyone poorer and has a negative impact on the effectiveness of aid to the most needy populations, who lack not only economic and technical means, but also educational methods and resources to assist people in realizing their full human potential.

An illustration of the significance of this problem is offered by the phenomenon of international tourism [141], which can be a major factor in economic development and cultural growth, but can also become an occasion for exploitation and moral degradation. The current situation offers unique opportunities for the economic aspects of development ? that is to say the flow of money and the emergence of a significant amount of local enterprise ? to be combined with the cultural aspects, chief among which is education. In many cases this is what happens, but in other cases international tourism has a negative educational impact both for the tourist and the local populace. The latter are often exposed to immoral or even perverted forms of conduct, as in the case of so-called sex tourism, to which many human beings are sacrificed even at a tender age. It is sad to note that this activity often takes place with the support of local governments, with silence from those in the tourists' countries of origin, and with the complicity of many of the tour operators. Even in less extreme cases, international tourism often follows a consumerist and hedonistic pattern, as a form of escapism planned in a manner typical of the countries of origin, and therefore not conducive to authentic encounter between persons and cultures. We need, therefore, to develop a different type of tourism that has the ability to promote genuine mutual understanding, without taking away from the element of rest and healthy recreation. Tourism of this type needs to increase, partly through closer coordination with the experience gained from international cooperation and enterprise for development.

62. Another aspect of integral human development that is worthy of attention is the phenomenon of migration. This is a striking phenomenon because of the sheer numbers of people involved, the social, economic, political, cultural and religious problems it raises, and the dramatic challenges it poses to nations and the international community. We can say that we are facing a social phenomenon of epoch-making proportions that requires bold, forward-looking policies of international cooperation if it is to be handled effectively. Such policies should set out from close collaboration between the migrants' countries of origin and their countries of destination; it should be accompanied by adequate international norms able to coordinate different legislative systems with a view to safeguarding the needs and rights of individual migrants and their families, and at the same time, those of the host countries. No country can be expected to address today's problems of migration by itself. We are all witnesses of the burden of suffering, the dislocation and the aspirations that accompany the flow of migrants. The phenomenon, as everyone knows, is difficult to manage; but there is no doubt that foreign workers, despite any difficulties concerning integration, make a significant contribution to the economic development of the host country through their labour, besides that which they make to their country of origin through the money they send home. Obviously, these labourers cannot be considered as a commodity or a mere workforce. They must not, therefore, be treated like any other factor of production. Every migrant is a human person who, as such, possesses fundamental, inalienable rights that must be respected by everyone and in every circumstance [142].

63. No consideration of the problems associated with development could fail to highlight the direct link between poverty and unemployment. In many cases, poverty results from a violation of the dignity of human work, either because work opportunities are limited (through unemployment or underemployment), or ?because a low value is put on work and the rights that flow from it, especially the right to a just wage and to the personal security of the worker and his or her family?[143]. For this reason, on 1 May 2000 on the occasion of the Jubilee of Workers, my venerable predecessor Pope John Paul II issued an appeal for ?a global coalition in favour of ?decent work?'[144], supporting the strategy of the International Labour Organization. In this way, he gave a strong moral impetus to this objective, seeing it as an aspiration of families in every country of the world. What is meant by the word ?decent? in regard to work? It means work that expresses the essential dignity of every man and woman in the context of their particular society: work that is freely chosen, effectively associating workers, both men and women, with the development of their community; work that enables the worker to be respected and free from any form of discrimination; work that makes it possible for families to meet their needs and provide schooling for their children, without the children themselves being forced into labour; work that permits the workers to organize themselves freely, and to make their voices heard; work that leaves enough room for rediscovering one's roots at a personal, familial and spiritual level; work that guarantees those who have retired a decent standard of living.

64. While reflecting on the theme of work, it is appropriate to recall how important it is that labour unions ? which have always been encouraged and supported by the Church ? should be open to the new perspectives that are emerging in the world of work. Looking to wider concerns than the specific category of labour for which they were formed, union organizations are called to address some of the new questions arising in our society: I am thinking, for example, of the complex of issues that social scientists describe in terms of a conflict between worker and consumer. Without necessarily endorsing the thesis that the central focus on the worker has given way to a central focus on the consumer, this would still appear to constitute new ground for unions to explore creatively. The global context in which work takes place also demands that national labour unions, which tend to limit themselves to defending the interests of their registered members, should turn their attention to those outside their membership, and in particular to workers in developing countries where social rights are often violated. The protection of these workers, partly achieved through appropriate initiatives aimed at their countries of origin, will enable trade unions to demonstrate the authentic ethical and cultural motivations that made it possible for them, in a different social and labour context, to play a decisive role in development. The Church's traditional teaching makes a valid distinction between the respective roles and functions of trade unions and politics. This distinction allows unions to identify civil society as the proper setting for their necessary activity of defending and promoting labour, especially on behalf of exploited and unrepresented workers, whose woeful condition is often ignored by the distracted eye of society.

65. Finance, therefore ? through the renewed structures and operating methods that have to be designed after its misuse, which wreaked such havoc on the real economy ? now needs to go back to being an instrument directed towards improved wealth creation and development. Insofar as they are instruments, the entire economy and finance, not just certain sectors, must be used in an ethical way so as to create suitable conditions for human development and for the development of peoples. It is certainly useful, and in some circumstances imperative, to launch financial initiatives in which the humanitarian dimension predominates. However, this must not obscure the fact that the entire financial system has to be aimed at sustaining true development. Above all, the intention to do good must not be considered incompatible with the effective capacity to produce goods. Financiers must rediscover the genuinely ethical foundation of their activity, so as not to abuse the sophisticated instruments which can serve to betray the interests of savers. Right intention, transparency, and the search for positive results are mutually compatible and must never be detached from one another. If love is wise, it can find ways of working in accordance with provident and just expediency, as is illustrated in a significant way by much of the experience of credit unions.

Both the regulation of the financial sector, so as to safeguard weaker parties and discourage scandalous speculation, and experimentation with new forms of finance, designed to support development projects, are positive experiences that should be further explored and encouraged, highlighting the responsibility of the investor. Furthermore, the experience of micro-finance, which has its roots in the thinking and activity of the civil humanists ? I am thinking especially of the birth of pawnbroking ? should be strengthened and fine-tuned. This is all the more necessary in these days when financial difficulties can become severe for many of the more vulnerable sectors of the population, who should be protected from the risk of usury and from despair. The weakest members of society should be helped to defend themselves against usury, just as poor peoples should be helped to derive real benefit from micro-credit, in order to discourage the exploitation that is possible in these two areas. Since rich countries are also experiencing new forms of poverty, micro-finance can give practical assistance by launching new initiatives and opening up new sectors for the benefit of the weaker elements in society, even at a time of general economic downturn.

66. Global interconnectedness has led to the emergence of a new political power, that of consumers and their associations. This is a phenomenon that needs to be further explored, as it contains positive elements to be encouraged as well as excesses to be avoided. It is good for people to realize that purchasing is always a moral ? and not simply economic ? act. Hence the consumer has a specific social responsibility, which goes hand-in- hand with the social responsibility of the enterprise. Consumers should be continually educated[145] regarding their daily role, which can be exercised with respect for moral principles without diminishing the intrinsic economic rationality of the act of purchasing. In the retail industry, particularly at times like the present when purchasing power has diminished and people must live more frugally, it is necessary to explore other paths: for example, forms of cooperative purchasing like the consumer cooperatives that have been in operation since the nineteenth century, partly through the initiative of Catholics. In addition, it can be helpful to promote new ways of marketing products from deprived areas of the world, so as to guarantee their producers a decent return. However, certain conditions need to be met: the market should be genuinely transparent; the producers, as well as increasing their profit margins, should also receive improved formation in professional skills and technology; and finally, trade of this kind must not become hostage to partisan ideologies. A more incisive role for consumers, as long as they themselves are not manipulated by associations that do not truly represent them, is a desirable element for building economic democracy.

67. In the face of the unrelenting growth of global interdependence, there is a strongly felt need, even in the midst of a global recession, for a reform of the United Nations Organization, and likewise of economic institutions and international finance, so that the concept of the family of nations can acquire real teeth. One also senses the urgent need to find innovative ways of implementing the principle of the responsibility to protect [146] and of giving poorer nations an effective voice in shared decision-making. This seems necessary in order to arrive at a political, juridical and economic order which can increase and give direction to international cooperation for the development of all peoples in solidarity. To manage the global economy; to revive economies hit by the crisis; to avoid any deterioration of the present crisis and the greater imbalances that would result; to bring about integral and timely disarmament, food security and peace; to guarantee the protection of the environment and to regulate migration: for all this, there is urgent need of a true world political authority, as my predecessor Blessed John XXIII indicated some years ago. Such an authority would need to be regulated by law, to observe consistently the principles of subsidiarity and solidarity, to seek to establish the common good [147], and to make a commitment to securing authentic integral human development inspired by the values of charity in truth. Furthermore, such an authority would need to be universally recognized and to be vested with the effective power to ensure security for all, regard for justice, and respect for rights [148]. Obviously it would have to have the authority to ensure compliance with its decisions from all parties, and also with the coordinated measures adopted in various international forums. Without this, despite the great progress accomplished in various sectors, international law would risk being conditioned by the balance of power among the strongest nations. The integral development of peoples and international cooperation require the establishment of a greater degree of international ordering, marked by subsidiarity, for the management of globalization [149]. They also require the construction of a social order that at last conforms to the moral order, to the interconnection between moral and social spheres, and to the link between politics and the economic and civil spheres, as envisaged by the Charter of the United Nations.

President's Barack Obama's Commencement Address at Notre Dame

May 17, 2009

This is the generation that must find a path back to prosperity and decide how we respond to a global economy that left millions behind even before this crisis hit - an economy where greed and short-term thinking were too often rewarded at the expense of fairness, and diligence, and an honest day's work.

We must decide how to save God's creation from a changing climate that threatens to destroy it. We must seek peace at a time when there are those who will stop at nothing to do us harm, and when weapons in the hands of a few can destroy the many. And we must find a way to reconcile our ever-shrinking world with its ever-growing diversity - diversity of thought, of culture, and of belief.

In short, we must find a way to live together as one human family.

It is this last challenge that I'd like to talk about today. For the major threats we face in the 21st century - whether it's global recession or violent extremism; the spread of nuclear weapons or pandemic disease - do not discriminate. They do not recognize borders. They do not see color. They do not target specific ethnic groups.
Moreover, no one person, or religion, or nation can meet these challenges alone. Our very survival has never required greater cooperation and understanding among all people from all places than at this moment in history.
Unfortunately, finding that common ground - recognizing that our fates are tied up, as Dr. King said, in a "single garment of destiny" - is not easy. Part of the problem, of course, lies in the imperfections of man - our selfishness, our pride, our stubbornness, our acquisitiveness, our insecurities, our egos; all the cruelties large and small that those of us in the Christian tradition understand to be rooted in original sin. We too often seek advantage over others. We cling to outworn prejudice and fear those who are unfamiliar. Too many of us view life only through the lens of immediate self-interest and crass materialism; in which the world is necessarily a zero-sum game. The strong too often dominate the weak, and too many of those with wealth and with power find all manner of justification for their own privilege in the face of poverty and injustice. And so, for all our technology and scientific advances, we see around the globe violence and want and strife that would seem sadly familiar to those in ancient times.

We know these things; and hopefully one of the benefits of the wonderful education you have received is that you have had time to consider these wrongs in the world, and grown determined, each in your own way, to right them. And yet, one of the vexing things for those of us interested in promoting greater understanding and cooperation among people is the discovery that even bringing together persons of good will, men and women of principle and purpose, can be difficult.

The soldier and the lawyer may both love this country with equal passion, and yet reach very different conclusions on the specific steps needed to protect us from harm. The gay activist and the evangelical pastor may both deplore the ravages of HIV/AIDS, but find themselves unable to bridge the cultural divide that might unite their efforts. Those who speak out against stem cell research may be rooted in admirable conviction about the sacredness of life, but so are the parents of a child with juvenile diabetes who are convinced that their son's or daughter's hardships can be relieved.

The question, then, is how do we work through these conflicts? Is it possible for us to join hands in common effort? As citizens of a vibrant and varied democracy, how do we engage in vigorous debate? How does each of us remain firm in our principles, and fight for what we consider right, without demonizing those with just as strongly held convictions on the other side?

Nowhere do these questions come up more powerfully than on the issue of abortion.

As I considered the controversy surrounding my visit here, I was reminded of an encounter I had during my Senate campaign, one that I describe in a book I wrote called The Audacity of Hope. A few days after I won the Democratic nomination, I received an email from a doctor who told me that while he voted for me in the primary, he had a serious concern that might prevent him from voting for me in the general election. He described himself as a Christian who was strongly pro-life, but that's not what was preventing him from voting for me.

What bothered the doctor was an entry that my campaign staff had posted on my website - an entry that said I would fight "right-wing ideologues who want to take away a woman's right to choose." The doctor said that he had assumed I was a reasonable person, but that if I truly believed that every pro-life individual was simply an ideologue who wanted to inflict suffering on women, then I was not very reasonable. He wrote, "I do not ask at this point that you oppose abortion, only that you speak about this issue in fair-minded words."

Fair-minded words.

After I read the doctor's letter, I wrote back to him and thanked him. I didn't change my position, but I did tell my staff to change the words on my website. And I said a prayer that night that I might extend the same presumption of good faith to others that the doctor had extended to me. Because when we do that - when we open our hearts and our minds to those who may not think like we do or believe what we do - that's when we discover at least the possibility of common ground.

That's when we begin to say, "Maybe we won't agree on abortion, but we can still agree that this is a heart-wrenching decision for any woman to make, with both moral and spiritual dimensions.

So let's work together to reduce the number of women seeking abortions by reducing unintended pregnancies, and making adoption more available, and providing care and support for women who do carry their child to term. Let's honor the conscience of those who disagree with abortion, and draft a sensible conscience clause, and make sure that all of our health care policies are grounded in clear ethics and sound science, as well as respect for the equality of women."

Understand - I do not suggest that the debate surrounding abortion can or should go away. No matter how much we may want to fudge it - indeed, while we know that the views of most Americans on the subject are complex and even contradictory - the fact is that at some level, the views of the two camps are irreconcilable. Each side will continue to make its case to the public with passion and conviction. But surely we can do so without reducing those with differing views to caricature.

Open hearts. Open minds. Fair-minded words.

It's a way of life that has always been the Notre Dame tradition. Father Hesburgh has long spoken of this institution as both a lighthouse and a crossroads. The lighthouse that stands apart, shining with the wisdom of the Catholic tradition, while the crossroads is where "...differences of culture and religion and conviction can co-exist with friendship, civility, hospitality, and especially love." And I want to join him and Father Jenkins in saying how inspired I am by the maturity and responsibility with which this class has approached the debate surrounding today's ceremony.

This tradition of cooperation and understanding is one that I learned in my own life many years ago - also with the help of the Catholic Church.

I was not raised in a particularly religious household, but my mother instilled in me a sense of service and empathy that eventually led me to become a community organizer after I graduated college. A group of Catholic churches in Chicago helped fund an organization known as the Developing Communities Project, and we worked to lift up South Side neighborhoods that had been devastated when the local steel plant closed.
It was quite an eclectic crew. Catholic and Protestant churches. Jewish and African-American organizers. Working-class black and white and Hispanic residents. All of us with different experiences. All of us with different beliefs. But all of us learned to work side by side because all of us saw in these neighborhoods other human beings who needed our help - to find jobs and improve schools. We were bound together in the service of others.
And something else happened during the time I spent in those neighborhoods. Perhaps because the church folks I worked with were so welcoming and understanding; perhaps because they invited me to their services and sang with me from their hymnals; perhaps because I witnessed all of the good works their faith inspired them to perform, I found myself drawn - not just to work with the church, but to be in the church. It was through this service that I was brought to Christ.

At the time, Cardinal Joseph Bernardin was the Archbishop of Chicago. For those of you too young to have known him, he was a kind and good and wise man. A saintly man. I can still remember him speaking at one of the first organizing meetings I attended on the South Side. He stood as both a lighthouse and a crossroads - unafraid to speak his mind on moral issues ranging from poverty, AIDS, and abortion to the death penalty and nuclear war. And yet, he was congenial and gentle in his persuasion, always trying to bring people together; always trying to find common ground. Just before he died, a reporter asked Cardinal Bernardin about this approach to his ministry. And he said, "You can't really get on with preaching the Gospel until you've touched minds and hearts."
My heart and mind were touched by the words and deeds of the men and women I worked alongside with in Chicago. And I'd like to think that we touched the hearts and minds of the neighborhood families whose lives we helped change. For this, I believe, is our highest calling.

You are about to enter the next phase of your life at a time of great uncertainty. You will be called upon to help restore a free market that is also fair to all who are willing to work; to seek new sources of energy that can save our planet; to give future generations the same chance that you had to receive an extraordinary education. And whether as a person drawn to public service, or someone who simply insists on being an active citizen, you will be exposed to more opinions and ideas broadcast through more means of communications than have ever existed before. You will hear talking heads scream on cable, read blogs that claim definitive knowledge, and watch politicians pretend to know what they're talking about. Occasionally, you may also have the great fortune of seeing important issues debated by well-intentioned, brilliant minds. In fact, I suspect that many of you will be among those bright stars.

In this world of competing claims about what is right and what is true, have confidence in the values with which you've been raised and educated. Be unafraid to speak your mind when those values are at stake. Hold firm to your faith and allow it to guide you on your journey. Stand as a lighthouse.

But remember too that the ultimate irony of faith is that it necessarily admits doubt. It is the belief in things not seen. It is beyond our capacity as human beings to know with certainty what God has planned for us or what He asks of us, and those of us who believe must trust that His wisdom is greater than our own.

This doubt should not push us away from our faith. But it should humble us. It should temper our passions, and cause us to be wary of self-righteousness. It should compel us to remain open, and curious, and eager to continue the moral and spiritual debate that began for so many of you within the walls of Notre Dame. And within our vast democracy, this doubt should remind us to persuade through reason, through an appeal whenever we can to universal rather than parochial principles, and most of all through an abiding example of good works, charity, kindness, and service that moves hearts and minds.

For if there is one law that we can be most certain of, it is the law that binds people of all faiths and no faith together. It is no coincidence that it exists in Christianity and Judaism; in Islam and Hinduism; in Buddhism and humanism. It is, of course, the Golden Rule - the call to treat one another as we wish to be treated. The call to love. To serve. To do what we can to make a difference in the lives of those with whom we share the same brief moment on this Earth.

So many of you at Notre Dame - by the last count, upwards of 80% -- have lived this law of love through the service you've performed at schools and hospitals; international relief agencies and local charities. That is incredibly impressive, and a powerful testament to this institution. Now you must carry the tradition forward. Make it a way of life. Because when you serve, it doesn't just improve your community, it makes you a part of your community. It breaks down walls. It fosters cooperation. And when that happens - when people set aside their differences to work in common effort toward a common good; when they struggle together, and sacrifice together, and learn from one another - all things are possible.

                                               E Pluribus Unum Spring 2012 Summary

Course Goal: To introduce Xavier students to the advantages of cultural diversity and to an awareness of what the human family has in common. To begin to appreciate what the motto E Pluribus Unum can mean for all of us today. Thus three goals 1. To see the value of diversity 2. To see the value of cooperating together as one human family. Diversity is not divisiveness. 3. To begin to examine what structures we need to better bring about diversity and harmony among all.
Let me try to take a look at what we have done and see how this brief course has helped us move toward the goals above.
1. The speakers have shown that women have human rights and should be treated fairly in the workplace. As students at Xavier, in our families, as citizens, we can have respectful, friendly relations. Stand up in the face of prejudice or discrimination. Work for the ratification of CEDAW, the Covenant to End Discrimination against women. Certainly end all violence against women.
2. Blacks, Muslims, Jews, Christians all have diverse strengths that can contribute to the common good. Mixing and learning more about other ethnic and religious groups can help us in business, in the community, and in our efforts toward world peace.
3. By the end of the course students should 1. be able to describe stereotype, prejudice, and discrimination, why the latter are wrong, and how to minimize their occurrence. 2. know ways of promoting understanding, unity, and cooperation among people of diverse backgrounds, talents, and strengths 3. begin to develop a vision of where humankind should be headed, your own talents and strengths, how you can best lead toward your vision.
4. The value of diversity has many answers. Each individual and each ethic group and most religions have strengths as well as weaknesses. We always want to emphasize strengths rather than weaknesses. We gain when we embrace strengths from many different groups. Different strengths can contribute to the common good. We gain when we cooperate with different groups, indeed, when we cooperate as one human family on major issues such as war and peace, basic human rights, the global economy, the sustainabiliity of our earth. In our personal lives as well as with other nations our emphasis should be on compassionate listening to the needs of others instead of finding fault with one another, putting one another down, hoarding resources, lording it over others, fighting with one another. A change in our attitudes could create a more positive, sharing, loving world, a world able to progress in the arts and sciences, and in knowledge and love of one another.
5. My main distinctive gift to you is the offer of a vision of hope, envisioning external and internal structures that would make this a world more in accord with God?s Word, a new beginning for all of us. If you remember anything from this brief course, I want you to remember and be able to explain briefly my five main external structures: a common ethic; the various forms of non-violence, especially peace education; getting basic civil, political, economic, and solidarity rights into our legal and constitutional structures; a fair, inclusive, participative form of economic democracy; and a democratic world federation. We can create internal and external structures which will make it easier to be good.
6. Ersatz Security VS. Genuine Security
7. Suppose a traveling salesman came to your door and tried to sell you a product that was extremely expensive, way beyond your budget. Suppose the product was dangerous to human persons and our earth. Would you rush to a decision and go into debt to finance it? Even though it cripples the world economy and is dangerous beyond belief, at an outrageous price, world culture has bought the war system. We might even be willing to sacrifice for this product if we didn?t find that the security that we bought was ersatz and not genuine.
8. At the beginning of the Spiritual Exercises, St. Ignatius of Loyola says the purpose of the Exercises is ?to order one?s life, without reaching a decision through some disordered affection.? All of us I?m sure believe in rational, civil discourse. Does the war system put order into our human family? Through excessive fear, insecurity, perhaps even through reluctance to change our life-style, or the desire to dominate, have we made a bad buy? Do we have enough courage to examine another way to order the life of our small planet? Are we ready to listen to reason? Are we free internally to put a favorable interpretation on a proposal to end the war system? Would a democratic world federation help us to minimize prejudice, stereotypes, discrimination?
A Global Democratic Authority would be a federation. Individual citizens whose basic rights are being violated could appeal to the central organization. The Global Democratic Authority could prosecute individuals like Saddam Hussein without going to war against Iraq. A Global World Authority could have a peace-keeping police force to do what the US is trying to do now in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, etc.
In the 1950's when the governor of Arkansas insisted on racial segregation, President Eisenhower didn?t go to war with the State of Arkansas but sent in the federal marshals.
Presently resources for the UN come from member states. Some nations have withheld funds until they get their own way. Although the total need for taxes would be less because of much less military spending, fairer trade, and a more moral economic system, a Global Authority would have its own independent sources of revenue, such as taxing the use of the common areas of our planet that are not within any nation?s borders.
James Tobin, a Nobel laureate in economics, proposed a worldwide tax on international currency transactions, to be set somewhere between 0.01 per cent and 1 percent. He saw the tax as a means of discouraging excessive currency speculation. The turnover in the currency markets can run to three trillion dollars a day. Isn?t the Tobin tax a good idea whose time has come? The Tobin Tax could eliminate hunger and poverty. ?It could also be used to set up a stabilization fund that could guarantee the world?s banking system with resources considerably greater than those readily available to individual central banks. It could even take over the enormous debts those banks are currently incurring and so relieve the public finances of the relevant states.? (See The Tablet, Oct. 25, 2008, pp. 6-7)
If we do not make a fundamental change in the global system, we are likely to see wars or terrorist acts using nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, inhumane laser weapons, and an obscene multiplication of war-fighting robots within the next fifty years. Also, destruction of the earth?s environment is likely to go beyond the point of no-return. Economic melt-downs will be more frequent. Accidents at nuclear power plants can release excessive radiation throughout the world.
The huge resources going into the world?s militaries and the preparation for war must be redirected to promoting the common good of our human family. The UN has to do its work on a very small annual budget. Every one of the states in the U.S.A. has a larger annual budget than the UN regular budget! The total budget for the entire UN system (including the regular budget as well as the budgets for peacekeeping, the International Court of Justice, and all of the specialized agencies) is $12 billion, or 1/4 of the annual budget for the state of Ohio! All of the national governments of the world together spend 1 trillion dollars per year on their militaries. The U.S. military budget is half of that or 500 billion. Only one-fourth of the world?s military expenditures could feed, house, and provide basic health care for each person on earth!
9. Stereotypes: A stereotype is when attributes commonly associated with a group are assigned to an individual. For example, A person is classified into a group on the basis of one piece of information, such as age or gender. Characteristics commonly associated with the group are then assigned to the individual. What is generalized about the group (e.g. ?Young people dislike authority?) may or may not be true about the individual. Gender stereotypes: ?He?s talking with co-workers.? Interpretation: He?s discussing a new deal. ?She?s talking with co-workers.? Interpretation: She?s gossiping.
10. Discrimination: treating differently on a basis other than individual merit, e. g. not employing a black applicant or a native American applicant because of a prejudice against blacks and/or native Americans; giving a construction contract to a white corporation rather than to a predominantly black one.
11. Prejudice: an opinion without just grounds or before sufficient knowledge, an irrational attitude of hostility against a group because of their supposed characteristics, e.g. detaining Arab Muslims at airports because of presumed proclivity to hi-jack planes; presuming that radical fundamentalists are only found among Muslims; holding Senate hearings on ?radical Muslim fundamentalists? instead of all radical fundamentalist terrorists. If we are prejudiced against a certain ethnic or religious group, we can always find instances or events which will confirm our prejudice. When we free ourselves from prejudice or minimize prejudice, we will be more humble, forgiving, and objective.
12. Is a reasoned or faith conviction different from bias? After years of study, experience, faith, vision, should one start from zero as she/he approaches an issue? Is anyone completely objective?
13. We can minimize the occurrence of prejudice, stereotypes, and discrimination by external laws (against libel, hate crimes, etc.) but also by mixing with other groups and religions, emphasizing their strengths, listening to their stories, putting ourselves in their shoes. Being selective about media, video games, reading. Prayer, meditation, discernment of spirits, examen of consciousness help us to be honest with ourselves and our feelings. We can also stand up and resist prejudice and discrimination when it occurs in our presence.
14. Even if we have had disagreements or conflicts with those of other groups or religions, we can seek or help with reconciliation. Art Gish, Hebron Journal. ?I refuse to let anyone remain my enemy.?
15. Reconciliation is part of Ignatian Spirituality.
16. Those who follow the spirituality of St. Ignatius pursue a ministry of reconciliation, healing divisions. Jesus prayed that we be one as He and the Father are one. ?This is how all will know you are my disciples: your love for one another.? Jesus went beyond ordinary notions of love by enjoining us to love even our enemies. Scripture preaches solidarity. Great wealth existing side by side with poverty indicates a lack of solidarity in the community. ?If your enemy is hungry, feed him.? Romans 12.20 ?The community of believers were of one heart and one mind. None of them ever claimed anything as his own; rather, everything was held in common. Acts 4. 32 ff Acts 2.44 ?All this has been done by God who has reconciled us to himself through Christ and has given us the ministry of reconciliation.? 2 Corinthians 5.18
17. A ministry of reconciliation calls for humility and forgiveness. The arrogant are not easily reconciled. Those not willing to forgive find stable relationships difficult to sustain. But forgiveness does not mean tolerating injustice. If you steal my watch, I may forgive you. I also expect my watch back. Integral justice is at the heart of our relationship to our neighbor.
18. Religion is the creed, code, cult of a particular denomination. Whatever one?s religion, I understand faith as my relationship with God and justice as my relationship with my neighbor. The fifty persons I interviewed for my doctoral dissertation on Ignatian spirituality and justice would agree with that general understanding. In 1975 the thirty-second international congregation of the Society of Jesus placed new emphasis on joining justice to faith. Decree Four explains why the promotion of justice is an absolute requirement for the service of faith. Reconciliation within the human family and reconciliation with God go together. We can?t have one without the other. What structure does Xavier have that joins Faith and Justice?
19. Decree 2 , No. 22 of International meeting of the Society of Jesus, Spring, 2008. ?God has created a world with diverse inhabitants, and this is good. Creation expresses the rich beauty of this lovable world: people working, laughing, and thriving together are signs that God is alive among us. (See Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, no. 106-108.) However, diversity becomes problematic when the differences between people are lived in such a way that some prosper at the expense of others who are excluded in such a way that people fight, killing each other, and are intent on destruction. Then God in Christ suffers in and with the world, which he wants to renew. It is here that we must discern our mission according to the criteria of the magis and the more universal good. (Ibid. No. 97) God is present in the darkness of life intent on making all things new. God needs collaborators in this endeavour. ?nations? beyond geographical definitions await us, ?nations? that today include those who are poor and displaced, those who are profoundly lonely, those who ignore God?s existence and those who use God as an instrument for political purposes. These are new ?nations? and we have been sent to them.?

Practicing Leadership: Principles & Applications Third Edition, Arthur Shriberg-David Shriberg-Richa Kumari. P. 9 ?Vision, the Human Condition, and Leadership? What is the goal of the leader? Does it advance humankind? Is the content (the outcome) the key? Is the vision about a process (the ?I have a dream? speech)? Many leadership books and approaches center on a vision of improving some element of the human or organizational condition. Can a leader lead if there is no goal to lead toward? In the last quarter of the twentieth century the field of visioning came into vogue. Individuals, organizations, and societies are challenged to set noble goals that enhance the quality of life for all. Leaders that both articulate and move society toward that future are widely admired. We urge our readers to create their own vision for themselves.?

P. 191 4. ?The Ability to Inspire a Shared Vision Differentiates Leaders from Other Credible Sources. Although credibility is the foundation, leaders must envision an uplifting and ennobling future. People want leaders who are honest, inspiring, competent, and forward-looking. We expect leaders to take us to places we have never been before?to have clearly in mind an attractive destination that will make the journey worthwhile. Leadership isn?t telling people what to do. Leadership is painting a picture of an exciting possibility of how we can achieve a common goal. Equally important is the leader?s capacity to enlist others to transform the vision into reality.?

?The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision. It?s got to be a vision you articulate clearly and forcefully on every occasion.? Fr. Theodore Hesburgh, President Emeritus of the University of Notre Dame.

20. Thus envisioning and up-dating structures can celebrate and make use of our diverse strengths, but give us the means to work and live together.

21. There is a ?civil war? in the Catholic Church. (See New York Times, 5/9/09 A 15;) Perhaps Catholics are not distinguishing essentials from prudential admonitions or practices that can be changed. Perhaps our political differences are stronger than our religious convictions. We want unity in essentials, freedom in the fallible and uncertain, charity in everything.

22. Forgiveness also includes ourselves. It is difficult to learn forgiveness of others if we can?t forgive ourselves.
23. The Sacrament of Penance is now called the Sacrament of Reconciliation, reconciliation with God, our neighbor, and the earth.
24. Christians sense a oneness based in part on St. Paul?s First Letter to the Corinthians 12.12-31. ?There are many different members, but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, ?I do not need you,? any more than the head can say to the feet, ?I do not need you.? . . If one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members share its joy. You, then are the body of Christ. Every one of you is a member of it.?
25. The Catholic Church in Gaudium et Spes, The Church in the Modern World, No. 92 stresses the value of unity in the midst of diversity and the value of diversity in the midst of unity: ?The Church shows itself as a sign of that amity which renders possible sincere dialogue and strengthens it. Such a mission requires us first of all to create in the church itself mutual esteem, reverence and harmony, and to acknowledge all legitimate diversity; in this way all who constitute the one people of God will be able to engage in ever more fruitful dialogue, whether they are pastors or other members of the faithful. For the ties which unite the faithful together are stronger than those which separate them: let there be unity in what is necessary, freedom in what is doubtful, and charity in everything.? Unitatis Redintegratio, Vatican II Decree on Ecumenism, No. 11 ?When comparing doctrines with one another, they should remember that in Catholic doctrine there exists an order or ?hierarchy? of truths, since they vary in their relation to the foundation of the Christian faith.?
26. Belief in the Trinity, the Incarnation, Redemption, the sacraments, are basic. Kneeling during the Eucharistic Prayer admits of change or exception. We are finite, fallible, a pilgrim church. We can always grow in our understanding of our Faith. We cannot always have absolute certitude that every aspect of a religious truth or its expression has been finalized.
27. Political truths have similar degrees of certitude. We know we want to love and protect our nation and our world. We don?t always know the best way to provide security and welfare for all.
28. From 1776 to 1788 the original 13 sovereign states in America operated according to the Articles of Confederation. Appointment to the Continental Congress and the funding came through the thirteen state governments which focused on their own interests. There was no way to enforce agreements under the Articles of Confederation. Boycotting the Congress when a state did not get its way was frequent. In violations of agreements under the articles seven states were printing paper money. New York had its own customs system. Lacking good ports of its own, New Jersey had to send its exports through New York or Philadelphia and to pay taxes to both Pennsylvania and New York. In 1785 Connecticut passed a law that gave its manufacturers an advantage over industries in New York and Massachusetts. New York had a tariff on Connecticut wood and New Jersey butter. Philadelphia refused to accept New Jersey money. About 2000 people were killed in a war between Pennsylvania and Connecticut.
29. Just as the thirteen colonies in 1787 became convinced they needed to move from a confederation to a federation, the late ?most trusted man in America? Walter Cronkite knew that national sovereignty today means something new. Even though our economy and our military is still unsurpassed, the United States cannot go alone. We need to respect and value the whole person and every person. We need to value all peoples and all cultures. True openness and sharing with one another does not mean loss of individual identity but profound unity.
30. ? Our first president, George Washington was not against parties, but he was against the spirit of parties. ? by this term Washington meant the attitude that one?s own faction or part was more important than the whole. . or that one?s own party?s interest were the same as the interests of the whole. .the spirit of party meant to overcome, or even destroy, rather than learn from the opposition. A reconciling force as Washington was, can help us regenerate our image of the democratic process and correct our fantasies that a marketplace of egoistic impulses somehow miraculously produces intelligence and harmony, both in the self and in society. Washingtonian democracy is not the freedom to try to destroy each other physically or philosophically or morally, but the freedom to bring one?s own best thought together with one?s best effort to listen and attend to the other.? (See Jacob Needleman, The American Soul, Rediscovering the Wisdom of the Founders, pp. 127-129)
31. All need to contribute to the common good. All need to have care for one another, protect one another.
32. Selected History of the US and Peace
Bragdon, McCutchen, History of a Free People: Washington?s Farewell Address: Washington warned the people of the United States against permanent dislike of some nations and passionate affection for others. ?The nation which indulges an habitual hatred for some nations will be too quick to resent the actions of the country it dislikes and too apt to make concessions to the country it likes. ? Washington feared the ?spirit of party? the bitter struggle between the followers of Hamilton (the Federalists) and Jefferson and Madison (the Republicans).
p. 272 ff. In 1828 the American Peace Society advocated the abolition of war. Since the formation of a U.S Federal union of independent states was working and we were in no danger from our neighbors, it was natural for Americans to think universal peace attainable. William Ladd, successful as a ship captain and then as a farmer, devoted his entire energy to the cause of peace. Ladd agitated for a Congress of Nations with courts of international justice to settle all disputes.
339 ff. Lincoln?s Second Inaugural Address: ?with malice toward none and charity toward all, let us bind the nation?s wounds and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.?
Woodrow Wilson?s peace program had detailed points: 1. Abolish general causes of war; have open diplomacy, disarmament 2. Self-determination for colonies 3. The League of Nations. Justice for all nations and peoples.
Herbert Hoover had seen the devastation and suffering of World War I. As a Quaker he believed war was morally wrong. ?I think I may say that I have witnessed as much of the horror and suffering of war as any other American. From it I have derived a deep passion for peace. Our foreign policy has one primary object, peace. We have no hates, we wish no further possessions, we harbor no military threats.? Hoover wanted to be a good neighbor to Latin America and withdrew our troops from Nicaragua. He promoted disarmament because armaments increased tax burdens and was wasteful of personnel and the means of production.
In 1928 France and the U.S. took the lead in promoting the Kellogg-Briand Treaty which attempted to ?outlaw war.? 63 nations ratified the document whereby they agreed to abandon war ?as an instrument of national policy? and to settle disputes by peaceful means. The Pact of Paris had no enforcement mechanism and did not prohibit wars in ?self-defense.?
33. President Barack Obama, Cairo University, Egypt, June 4, 2009: ?Just as Muslims do not fit a crude stereotype, America is not the crude stereotype of a self-interested empire. .We were founded upon the ideal that all are created equal. . We are shaped by every culture, drawn from every end of the Earth, and dedicated to a simple concept; E pluribus unum, ?Out of many, one.?
34. Unity does not mean everyone must agree on non-essential points. Citizens are diverse in race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, disabilities, etc., etc. On the other hand, all must follow civil positive law unless it violates the moral natural law. Segregation was civil law in the South until Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. and others worked to change these immoral laws. But diversity does not imply that anyone can murder, steal, etc. When Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr wrote the Letter From a Birmingham Jail, he quoted St. Peter in the Acts of the Apostles 4.19. Responding to the authorities who demanded that the apostles not preach the message of Jesus, St. Peter proclaimed: ?Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God?s sight for us to obey you rather than God.? Rev. King distinguished the moral law or natural law from civil or positive law. When he thus practiced civil disobedience, his conscience determined segregation laws were immoral, against the moral or natural law. Rev. Martin Luther King had great respect for civil law and did not rush quickly to judgment and practice civil disobedience without discernment and reflection. But segregation laws in the South were grossly unfair and demeaning.
35. We need to listen to all voices and listen well. One answer to self-deception is what process theologians like Fr. Joseph Bracken, S.J. call intersubjectivity. ?Our best chance for being truthful and objective in what we say and do is to be willing to share our thoughts and desires with other people and to listen to their response, to learn what they think and how they feel about the same issues. Through the give-and take of dialogue with other people, we will gradually come to see the inevitable limits of our own customary perspective on life. In listening carefully to the views of other people, especially those from a different cultural background, we will come to recognize our unconscious biases and prejudices in a way that would be virtually impossible simply through extended self-reflection on our part.? Christianity and Process Thought, Spirituality For a Changing World, pp. 66, 67/
Teaching of the Catholic Church
John XXIII, Peace on Earth 1963 No. 137 ?Today the universal common good poses problems of world-wide dimensions which cannot be adequately tackled or solved except by the efforts of public authorities endowed with a breadth of powers, structure, and means of the same proportions: that is, of public authorities which are in a position to act in an effective manner on a world-wide basis. The moral order itself, therefore, demands that such a form of public authority be established.?
Vatican II, The Church in the Modern World 1965 No. 82. ?It is our clear duty, then, to strain every muscle as we work for the time when all war can be completely outlawed by international consent. This goal undoubtedly requires the establishment of some universal public authority acknowledged as such by all, and endowed with effective power to safeguard, on the behalf of all, security, regard for justice, and respect for rights.
Pope Paul VI, The Progress of Peoples 1967 No.78 : ?Who does not see the necessity of thus establishing progressively a world authority, capable of acting effectively in the juridical and political sectors??
John Paul II, World Day of Peace Message, 2005, No. 9 ?Down the centuries, the teaching of the Church, drawing upon the philosophical and theological reflection of many Christian thinkers, has made a significant contribution in directing international law to the common good of the whole human family. Especially in more recent times the Popes have not hesitated to stress the importance of international law as a pledge of peace.? Since modern war harms mostly civilians, Catholic theology emphasizes today more a positive theology of peace. ?War is the most barbarous and least effective way of resolving conflicts.? (Pope John Paul II quoted in Challenge of Peace 102) Again Pope John Paul II ?Violence begets violence. . . war must always be considered a defeat: a defeat of reason and of humanity. May we soon make a spiritual and cultural leap forward to outlaw war! Yes, never again war!? (Sept. 8, 2004. Address to religious leaders of the world at Assisi, Italy.)
Pope Benedict XVI, Love in Truth No. 67 and footnotes. ?To manage the global economy; to revive economies hit by the crisis; to avoid any deterioration of the present crisis and the greater imbalances that would result; to bring about integral and timely disarmament, food security and peace; to guarantee the protection of the environment and to regulate migration: for all this, there is urgent need of a true world political authority, as my predecessor Blessed John XXIII indicated some years ago. 2009
US Catholic Bishops, The Challenge of Peace, God?s Promise and our Response, No. 334 ff. 1983 ?We feel that a more all-inclusive and final solution is needed. We speak here of the truly effective international authority for which Pope John XXIII ardently longed in Peace on Earth No. 137 and of which Pope Paul VI spoke to the United Nations (1965), #2.?

                                                                     Study Questions
 

Describe prejudice, stereotypes, discrimination. How can we better recognize and minimized them in ourselves? In others?
Describe one of your interviews with someone different from you and what you learned from the interview.
Name one of the speakers and give points that she/he made and what positive influence she/he had on you.
How can better structures lessen prejudice and discrimination and enable the human family to better cooperate toward a world peace with justice?
Name the essential elements of a democratic world federation. How does it differ from a confederation of nations?
Name and explain briefly the external and internal structures of my own vision.
Sketch your own vision. Do you have a sense of how you can contribute to making your dream a reality?
Are there different degrees of certitude in religious and political life? Explain.
Are there times when civil disobedience from positive, civil law is appropriate? Explain.