Despite the fact that communities around the world are making peace, caring for each other, striving for social justice, and building right relationships every day we are faced with violence and its consequences in the unprecedented forced movement of peoples, gang and gun violence, terrorist attacks, fear and enemy-making, environmental degradation and the structural violence of poverty, racism, sexism, and xenophobia.
Like so many, we are horrified at the violence we witness in our world and appalled by the continued carnage we witness in streets and in our homes. In the face of so much pain and suffering; confronted by so much evil and immorality; we know that we must act.
We wholeheartedly condemn violence of every type whether direct, cultural or structural and we reject the false choice so often offered by our political leaders. We know we need not choose between violent action and doing nothing.
For decades many have been asking: Is there another way, another path, for the human community to take that will lead us beyond perpetual violence and war? Ours is a world desperately in need of nonviolence as a way of life; as a positive and powerful force for social change; as a process for ending violence without violence, transforming conflict and for protecting the vulnerable.
The Leadership Conference of Women Religious is compelled to work toward that world; a world where reverence for all living beings finds expression in a life of nonviolence. We stand in solidarity with the victims of violence everywhere and with the leaders of our Catholic Church as we heed the Gospel call to follow Jesus’ way of nonviolence, reconciliation, and universal love.
We commit ourselves and the members of our religious communities to choose the nonviolence of Jesus and to exercise all of our rights and duties as citizens to urge our leaders to act as responsible members of the world community. We join our prayer with religious people of all faiths who long for peace, who are working to make God’s dream for a world at peace a reality.
LCWR has spoken publically and consistently on the need for nonviolence and just peace.