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October 24 Thursday. October 29 Tuesday. October 30 Wednesday. Corporate Globalization," documentary film Life and Debt , commentary and conversation with Kevin Danaher Sobrato Commons Danaher is a veteran human-rights activist and co-founder of Global Exchange , a non-profit research, education, and action center dedicated to promoting people-to-people ties around the world. November 5 Tuesday. John Dear, S. Role," Fr. He is a noted expert on Catholic social ethics and international affairs. November 6 Wednesday.

November 7 Thursday. November 8 Friday. In he was imprisoned and tortured under the persecutions of the emperor Decius — for his confession of the faith. He died from his injuries in Toward the end of his life Origen wrote a treatise titled Against Celsus. In the selections below Origen argues that Christianity spread by peaceful means, con- sistent with the conduct of its founder. In doing so, he applies an allegorical interpretation to these texts. In the final sections Origen argues that Chris- tians are good citizens: they are committed to the defense of the state; only the warfare they wage in its behalf is spiritual.

In this connection, Origen argues that prayers on behalf of the emperor are far more effective against his enemies than the weapons the soldiers use on the field of battle. Against Celsus c. Now the existence of many kingdoms would have been a hindrance to the spread of the doctrine of Jesus throughout the entire world; not only for the reasons mentioned, but also on account of the necessity of men everywhere engaging in war, and ighting on behalf of their native country, which was the case before the times of Augustus, and in periods still more remote, when necessity arose, as when the Peloponnesians and Athenians warred against each other, and other nations in like manner.

How, then, was it possible for the Gospel doctrine of peace, which does not permit men to take vengeance even upon enemies, to prevail throughout the world, unless at the advent of Jesus a milder spirit had been everywhere introduced into the conduct of things? ANF 3. And yet, if a revolt had led to the formation of the Christian commonwealth, so that it derived its existence in this way from that of the Jews, who were permitted to take up arms in defence of the members of their families, and to slay their enemies, the Christian Lawgiver would not have altogether forbidden the putting of men to death; and yet He nowhere teaches that it is right for His own disciples to ofer violence to any one, however wicked.

Nor would the Christians, had they owed their origin to a rebellion, have adopted laws of so exceedingly mild a character as not to allow them, when it was their fate to be slain as sheep, on any occasion to resist their persecutors.

But with regard to the Christians, because they were taught not to avenge them- selves upon their enemies and have thus observed laws of a mild and philanthropic char- acter ; and because they would not, although able, have made war even if they had received authority to do so,—they have obtained this reward from God, that He has always warred in their behalf, and on certain occasions has restrained those who rose up against them and desired to destroy them.

ANF 4.

ANF 5. ANF 7. Whether is it Moses or Jesus who teaches falsely? Did the Father, when he sent Jesus, forget the commands which he had given to Moses? Or did he change his mind, condemn his own laws, and send forth a messenger with counter instructions? As to the promise made to the Jews that they should slay their enemies, it may be answered that any one who examines carefully into the meaning of this passage will ind himself unable to interpret it literally.

We hold, then, that the law has a twofold sense,—the one literal, the other spiritual,—as has been shown by some before us. And in this way also the just give up to destruction all their enemies, which are their vices, so that they do not spare even the children, that is, the early beginnings and promptings of evil. And, in like man- ner, those who disobey the law and word of God may well be compared to His enemies led astray by sin; and they may well be said to sufer the same fate as they deserve who have proved traitors to the truth of God.

Jesus the Rebel : Bearer of God's Peace and Justice by John Dear (2000, Paperback)

ANF 8. If that, then, is a laudable custom, how much more so, that while others are engaged in battle, these too should engage as the priests and ministers of God, keeping their hands pure, and wrestling in prayers to God on behalf of those who are ighting in a righteous cause, and for the king who reigns righteously, that whatever is opposed to those who act righteously may be destroyed! And we do take our part in public afairs, when along with righteous prayers we join self-denying exercises and meditations, which teach us to despise pleasures, and not to be led away by them. And none ight better for the king than we do.

We do not indeed ight under him, although he require it; but we ight on his behalf, forming a special army—an army of piety—by ofering our prayers to God. And if Celsus would have us to lead armies in defence of our country, let him know that we do this too, and that not for the purpose of being seen by men, or of vain- glory. And Christians are benefactors of their country more than others.

Jesus the Rebel: Bearer of God's Peace and Justice / Edition 1

For they train up citizens, and inculcate piety to the Supreme Being. And those who rule over us well are under the constraining inluence of the great King, whom we believe to be the Son of God, God the Word. And if those who govern in the Church, and are called rulers of the divine nation—that is, the Church—rule well, they rule in accordance with the divine commands, and never sufer themselves to be led astray by worldly policy.

And it is not for the purpose of escaping public duties that Christians decline public oices, but that they may reserve themselves for a diviner and more neces- sary service in the Church of God—for the salvation of men. And this service is at once necessary and right. He became a teacher of rhetoric and a student of Ter- tullian.

Outraged at the immorality of his time, Cyprian converted to Christianity around under the influence of the priest Caecilius and rose almost immedi- ately to prominence in the church. He was ordained a priest and then in or was elected bishop of Carthage. Under the persecution of Decius — , he had the unenviable task of guiding the African churches through the divisions that resulted from the imperial policy of forcing Christians to renounce the faith.

Under the later persecution of Valerian — , he surrendered and was mar- tyred by beheading in September Cyprian of Carthage 25 In the first excerpt are sections of a letter of Cyprian to his friend Donatus, to whom he wrote soon after his conversion. In it he gives a vivid description of the dark and violent world from which he escaped when he turned to God. He expresses in forceful language his repugnance at the killing of persons in war and gladiatorial games. In the second excerpt are sections from a treatise, On the Good of Patience. There Cyprian declares murder to be a mortal crime, adding in a memorable phrase that a hand that has carried the eucharist cannot be stained with the blood of the sword.

Patience is needed to practice the Christian ethic of nonretaliation, which finds supreme expression in martyrdom. Here Cyprian cites the example of Stephen cf. Acts 6 and 7 , the first Christian martyr.

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To Donatus 6. But in order that the characteristics of the divine may shine more brightly by the devel- opment of the truth, I will give you light to apprehend it, the obscurity caused by sin being wiped away. I will draw away the veil from the darkness of this hidden world. For a brief space conceive yourself to be transported to one of the loftiest peaks of some inaccessible mountain, thence gaze on the appearances of things lying below you, and with eyes turned in various directions look upon the eddies of the billowy world, while you yourself are removed from earthly contacts,—you will at once begin to feel compassion for the world, and with self-recollection and increasing gratitude to God, you will rejoice with all the greater joy that you have escaped it.

Consider the roads blocked up by robbers, the seas beset with pirates, wars scattered all over the earth with the bloody horror of camps. Impunity is claimed for the wicked deeds, not on the plea that they are guiltless, but because the cru- elty is perpetrated on a grand scale.

And now, if you turn your eyes and your regards to the cities themselves, you will behold a concourse more fraught with sadness than any solitude. Man is slaughtered that man may be gratiied, and the skill that is best able to kill is an exercise and an art.


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Crime is not only committed, but it is taught. What can be said more inhuman,—what more repulsive? Training is undergone to acquire the power to murder, and the achievement of murder is its glory. What state of things, I pray you, can that be, and what can it be like, in which men, whom none have condemned, ofer themselves to the wild beasts—men of ripe age, of suiciently beauti- ful person, clad in costly garments? Fathers look on their own sons; a brother is in the arena, and his sister is hard by; and although a grander display of pomp increases the price of the exhibi- tion, yet, oh shame!

And in looking upon scenes so frightful and so impious and so deadly, they do not seem to be aware that they are parricides with their eyes. But patience, beloved brethren, not only keeps watch over what is good, but it also repels what is evil.

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In harmony with the Holy Spirit, and associated with what is heavenly and divine, it struggles with the defence of its strength against the deeds of the lesh and the body, wherewith the soul is assaulted and taken. Let us look briely into a few things out of many, that from a few the rest also may be understood. Adultery, fraud, manslaugh- ter are mortal crimes. Let patience be strong and steadfast in the heart; and neither is the sanctiied body and temple of God polluted by adultery, nor is the innocence dedicated to righteousness stained with the contagion of fraud; nor, after the Eucharist carried in it, is the hand spotted with the sword and blood.

What beyond;—that you should not swear nor curse; that you should not seek again your goods when taken from you; that, when you receive a bufet, you should give your other cheek to the smiter; that you should forgive a brother who sins against you, not only seven times, but seventy times seven times, but, moreover, all his sins altogether; that you should love your enemies; that you should ofer prayer for your adversaries and persecu- tors? Can you accomplish these things unless you maintain the steadfastness of patience and endurance?