Renewing my Vow of Non-Violence on the International Day of Peace
Sept 21st was declared in 2001 by the United Nations as the International Day of Peace, a day of global ceasefire and nonviolence. Today throughout the world people will be observing this day through song, prayers, vigils, marches, even soccer matches. In years past I have planned and participated in events. This year life got in the way. But I still plan to observe the day. To start I am going to renew my vow of non-violence. It is something that I do from time to time and in between I fail, sometimes miserably, to uphold it, but I continue to renew it hoping I will do better next time, and sometimes I do. Peace has to begin somewhere and today, as the song goes, it begins with me. Please join me today in taking or renewing the Vow of Nonviolence.
A Vow of Nonviolence
Recognizing the violence in my own heart, yet trusting in the goodness and mercy of God,
I vow to practice the nonviolence of Jesus who taught us in the Sermon on the Mount:
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons and daughters of God...You have learned how it was said, "You must love your neighbor and hate your enemy"; but I say to you, "Love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you. In this way, you will be sons and daughters of your God in heaven."
Before God the Creator and the Sanctifying Spirit, I vow to carry out in my life the love and example of Jesus
* by striving for peace within myself and seeking to be a peacemaker in my daily life;
* by accepting suffering in the struggle for justice rather than inflicting it;
* by refusing to retaliate in the face of provocation and violence;
* by persevering in nonviolence of tongue and heart;
* by living conscientiously and simply so that I do not deprive others of the means to live;
* by actively resisting evil and working nonviolently to abolish war and the causes of war from my own heart and from the face of the earth. God, I trust in your sustaining love and believe that just as you gave me the grace and desire to offer this, so you will also bestow abundant grace to fulfill it.
(From Pax Christi USA and John Dear's Disarming the Heart)