Papal Peacemakers

My latest article for Aleteia reminds about the peace making role of the papacy and shows how the papacy can be the one dominant spiritual force for peace in the world.

Now it is Pope Francis who takes up the baton of the world’s chief peacemaker. Can Pope Francis help resolve the most difficult conflict the world has ever seen — the volatile and violent morass in the Middle East? If Islam really is the “religion of peace” can the pope somehow find a way to connect with Islamic leaders who might just be able to call off the jihadist dogs of war?

It seems unlikely. The way of the peacemaker is fraught with impossibilities. Nevertheless, we remember the amazing peaceful downfall of the communist empire partially brought about by St. John Paul II. We remember the fall of the Marcos regime in the Philippines and the peaceful overthrow of Eastern European dictators. Could the murderous jihadists of ISIS and the Boko Haram be overcome by prayer, sacrifices, and peaceful resistance?

With God all things are possible. Stalin once mocked the papacy by saying, “How many divisions has the pope?” In time Stalin’s proud empire fell into dust and the papacy not only still stands, but it is more powerful and has a greater global reach than ever before. In the long view of things it just may be that in another hundred years the terror threat of the Muslim fanatics will have caved in on itself.

Read the whole article here.