In response to our own Catholic World Day of Peace on January 1, Pope Benedict XVI quoted his Predecessor Pope John Paul II drawing attention to the negative repercussions for peace when entire populations live in poverty. “Poverty is often a contributory factor or a compounding element in conflicts, including armed ones. In turn, these conflicts fuel further tragic situations of poverty. “Our world”, he wrote, “shows increasing evidence of another grave threat to peace: many individuals and indeed whole peoples are living today in conditions of extreme poverty”.
Millions of people today live in extreme poverty around the world. This poverty has the power to hold peace at bay.
Today, and for more than 50 years, Mission Doctors have served at mission hospitals and clinics to offer health care to those most in need.
While the healthcare debate rages here in the US, the need in Africa and Latin America call some dedicated lay missionaries to leave the comfort of home and family to share their gifts and live their faith. They bring their professional skills and in doing so are also bearers of peace.
May we carry peace in our heart, share it in our families and workplaces, our communities and pray to hasten the day that swords will be beaten into plowshares.