Taken from an article to our friars, written by Fr. Michael Lasky, OFM Conv., who serves as Chairman of the Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Commission of Our Lady of the Angels Province:
On January 1st, Pope Francis marked the 50th World Peace Day with an address entitled Nonviolence: a Style of Politics for Peace. In his conclusion he names many of the difficulties and conflicts in our world today, and then he says, “Every such response, however modest, helps to build a world free of violence, the first step towards justice and peace.”
One of the best responders, a masterful practitioner of non-violent responses, is the co-president of Pax Christi International, Marie Dennis. Marie was recently named the National Catholic Reporter’s Person of the Year for 2016. She believes that making peace in today’s world requires not only new ways of acting, but also of seeing, and thinking.
If you are interested how we: as individuals, as a community, as a people of faith might make what the Pope calls a “modest response” to the many forms of violence found in our communities, then consider reading Marie Dennis’ book, St. Francis and the Foolishness of God, revised edition.
Marie and her co-authors use scripture and stories from the life of St. Francis to speak to contemporary difficulties that we as Americans face. Through their commentary they challenge us to see and think differently. Each section ends with an invitation for the reader to respond with prayer and in action. I have personally used this book for my own spiritual reading, for the book club at the Newman Center/UNC Chapel Hill, and in the friary in Durham, NC for spiritual sessions of house chapter. Each time new insights and challenges emerge.
To give credit where credit is due…Thank you to Fr. Curt Kreml, OFM Conv. for introducing me to this book, which keeps giving. Also thank you to Fr. Andy Santamauro, OFM Conv. and your good example, of using the book for a day of recollection for Holy Cross Parish, in Durham, NC.