The habits of dehumanization, violence, and war continue in U.S. policy and culture. The recent assassination of an Iranian leader is just another example of our disease and addiction to violence. Whether it is a retributive criminal justice system, the death penalty, killing, or war, we know that these strategies do not function to “deter” but yield cycles of spiritual, emotional, intellectual, physical, relational, structural, and cultural violence. That is who we become when we react to conflict with assassinations. It is a path of mutual destruction.
Pope Francis: “Violence is not the cure for our broken world. Countering violence with violence leads at best to forced migrations and enormous suffering, because vast amounts of resources are diverted to military ends and away from the everyday needs of young people, families experiencing hardship, the elderly, the infirm and the great majority of people in our world. At worst, it can lead to the death, physical and spiritual, of many people, if not of all.” World Day of Peace Message- Nonviolence: A Style of Politics for Peace, 2017.
The Provincial Council of the Viatorian Community joined with other faith communities in renouncing this escalation in violence. Here is a collective faith statement regarding Iran which the Viatorians, as members of the Conference of Major Superiors of Men, signed.