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Seventh Week in Ordinary Time

Jesus said to his disciples: "You have heard that it was said,  An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But I say to you, offer no resistance to one who is evil. When someone strikes you on your right cheek, turn the other one as well." (MT. 5:38-48)

Brother Really and his priest friend were having lunch when the subject of violence came up. BR, was concerned over the rash of murders in the neighborhood, the repeated gunfire, and the lack of compassion shown between people. He asked the priest, "Why is there so much violence in the world?" 

The priest explained to BR that violence in the Bible dates back to Cain and Able. There is no sure answer except that sin is the primary cause of violence. Cain was jealous, Moses was a murderer, Samson was prideful, David committed adultery, and the list goes on and on. However, the priest said, "Jesus in the gospel gives us an alternative toward violence. Jesus said that if someone stricks you on the cheek, offer him the other. And if someone wants your coat, give them another one as well." Some people would call these acts of pacifism. The gospels call us to peace. That is why the prophets of old called Jesus, "The Prince of Peace." Jesus wants us to display a spirit of turning our weapons of war to instruments of peace. Love conquers all violence! BR responded with a hardy "AMEN."  

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