Ukraine

Following are several new pieces responding to the Russian invasion of Ukraine and ongoing war there. If you have additional items to share, please send them to nonviolence@paxchristi.net.

Reaching a just and lasting peace in Ukraine, 15 June 2022, a statement from the individual participants of the Science and Ethics Study Group under the auspices of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network, and not that of any other organization, including the Holy See, the United Nations, or any national government.

Jesus taught the world that peacemakers are blessed, for they are the children of God. As war rages in Ukraine, the world needs peacemakers to help the warring sides to choose peace over continued conflict. The US, European Union, Turkey, China, and other countries should help both sides to feel secure in a negotiated peace agreement. For Ukraine, security means that a peace agreement will not be followed by renewed Russian threats or incursions. For Russia, security means that withdrawing from Ukraine will not be followed by the eastward expansion of NATO and heavy armaments into Ukraine. Peace, in short, means a neutral Ukraine that is secure in its sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity.

Pope Francis has put his plea for peacemaking in plain and powerful terms: I renew my appeal to those who govern nations: do not lead humanity to ruin. Please! Do not lead humanity to ruin!

His All-Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew has declared: We call upon all parties involved to pursue this path of dialogue and respect for international law, in order to bring an end to the conflict and allow all Ukrainians to live in harmony. Arms are not the solution.

The aim of peacemaking in Ukraine is not merely a negative peace – that is, a peace without justice – but a positive peace, based firmly on the four pillars of moral relations between states recognized by Saint John XXIII in his magisterial Pacem in Terris: truth, justice, willing cooperation, and freedom (Paragraph 80). Such moral relations are needed not only between Russia and Ukraine, but also between Russia, the US, and the European Union. … (Read the final version of the statement here..)

A call from Nonviolence International-Ukraine — Support the Ukrainian Stop the War Coalition

Pope Francis, Ukraine and effective nonviolent resistance, 30 May 2022, an article about Pope Francis’ accompaniment approach by CNI steering committee Eli McCarthy, posted by National Catholic Reporter

My sense is that the pope is trying to shift our gaze. It is a shift that he senses Jesus models. A shift toward pastoral accompaniment and a focus on how we might break the violent dynamic. It is not about condemning or judging people in very difficult situations, like some Ukrainians who choose to take up arms in violent defense of their country. It affirms and admires their willingness to take a high-risk stand against injustice rather than to be passive. At that same time, it is also not about justifying methods of war and enabling the violent dynamic to perpetuate and spread. … (Read the entire piece here.)

‘If we are unified, Satan will be unable to get in’: A report from an interfaith peace delegation to Ukraine, 21 June 2022, written by Michele Dunne and Eli McCarthy, published in America magazine

delegation to UkraineWhy I prayed in Kyiv when I could have prayed at home, 7 June 2022, written by Rose Marie Berger, published in Sojourners (where Rose is a senior editor.) Rose, along with fellow CNI steering committee members Eli McCarthy and Sr. Sheila Kinsey, participated in a delegation of faith leaders to Ukraine in mid-May.

VIDEO: Sr. Sheila Kinsey, Rose Berger and Eli McCarthy report on the delegation of faith leaders to Ukraine – 6 June 2022, Zoom call with members of the CNI steering committee, Pax Christi representatives and others

International religious delegation travelling to Kyiv to pray for peace, 23 May 2022. Additional information about the delegation of faith leaders to Ukraine.

The war in Ukraine is not as simple as good versus evil for scholars of liberation theology, 24 March 2022, written by Eduardo Campos Lima, America magazine

Five ways to support courageous nonviolent resistance in Ukraine, 23 March 2022, written by Eli McCarthy, published by Waging Nonviolence

Is a great shift in the human journey at hand?, 21 March 2022, written by Ken Butigan, posted by Campaign Nonviolence (Pace e Bene)

People around the world are protesting the Russian invasion. Will their protests work?, 14 March 2022, written by Erica Chenoweth, published in The Washington Post

Ukraine doesn’t need to match Russia’s military might to defend against invasion, 25 February 2022, written by George Lakey, published by Waging Nonviolence

10 ways to avoid a devastating war in Ukraine, 22 February 2022, written by Eli McCarthy, published by America magazine

Find more responses to the war in Ukraine on Pax Christi International’s website here.

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