The New Year, 2013: Pray - Study - Act
In This Issue
PRAY: Reflection for January 1st
STUDY: The 50th Anniversary of Pacem in Terris
ACT: The Vow of Nonviolence
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New Year's Eve through Epiphany, 
December 31, 2012 - January 6, 2013
Greetings of peace!  
(NOTE: This email has the corrected link for the "Pray" section below. My apologies for the incorrect link in the previous email.)
Reflecting on New Year's Day, which is also the Solemnity of Mary, the Octave Day of Christmas and the World Day of Peace, Mary Jo Iozzio writes: 
"Pope Paul VI called for this yearly observance for peace 'as a hope and as a promise . . . that peace with its just and beneficent equilibrium may dominate the development of events to come.' Neither the solemnity nor the octave are overridden; rather, the observance commemorates the role that Mary's child, Jesus, fills as the Prince of Peace and her role in salvation history as Theotokos (God-bearer) and, thereby, as Queen of Peace: 'Indeed, these holy and loving religious remembrances must shed their light of goodness, wisdom, and hope upon the prayer for, the meditation upon, and the fostering of the great and yearned-for gift of Peace, of which the world has so much need' ('The Day of Peace,' 1 January 1968)."
The new year presents us with a time to take stock of where we have been, where we are going, and what we long to become as people of peace. Many Pax Christi local groups and individual members renew or take for the first time the Vow of Nonviolence (see the "Act" section below). We hope that the resources in this Pray-Study-Act e-bulletin will help you as you orient yourself for a new year, for new opportunities for peace-making, for a deeper and more transformative commitment to seek justice. We thank you for your witness to the peace of Christ over the past year, and we are excited to walk with you into the new. 
For additional resources from throughout Advent and Christmas, including links to all previous PSA e-bulletins and reflections, we hope you'll visit our Advent and Christmas resource page on the website.


In peace,

Johnny Zokovitch
Director of Communications, Pax Christi USA
 PRAY: January 1, New Year's Day -
World Day of Peace - Solemnity of Mary
By Donna Toliver Grimes 

Numbers 6:22-27 | Galatians 4:4-7 | Luke 2:16-21


"When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart." ~Luke 2:17-19


We live in a world full of words, though most of them are meaningless. In the presence of advertising hype, subliminal messages, sound bites spun in any and every direction and a culture of communication comprised of large doses of profanity and superficiality, miscommunication is the standard. Add to this the natural awkwardness of human relations and the damaging effects of sin and we simply drown in words.


Yet human beings need words to survive...


STUDY: 50th Anniversary of Pacem in Terris

This year, 2013, marks the 50th anniversary of Pope John XXIII's far-reaching, prophetic and challenging encyclical, "Pacem in Terris." This year would be a good time to revisit the encyclical and look for ways to make concrete in our world today the values and truths at the heart of this document. Below is a short excerpt, followed by a link to the entire document.


35. Hence, before a society can be considered well-ordered, creative, and consonant with human dignity, it must be based on truth. St. Paul expressed this as follows: "Putting away lying, speak ye the truth every man with his neighbor, for we are members one of another."(25) And so will it be, if each man acknowledges sincerely his own rights and his own duties toward others.


Human society, as We here picture it, demands that men be guided by justice, respect the rights of others and do their duty. It demands, too, that they be animated by such love as will make them feel the needs of others as their own, and induce them to share their goods with others, and to strive in the world to make all men alike heirs to the noblest of intellectual and spiritual values. Nor is this enough; for human society thrives on freedom, namely, on the use of means which are consistent with the dignity of its individual members, who, being endowed with reason, assume responsibility for their own actions...

ACT: The Vow of Nonviolence

The Vow of Nonviolence was composed by Eileen Egan and Rev. John Dear, S.J. Tens of thousands of people have taken the Vow. The Vow of Nonviolence can be pronounced privately, with a local peace community, as part of a parish liturgy, or any other way that suits you. Many profess the Vow each year as part of their New Year observance.


Click here to see the Vow of Nonviolence, including links to downloadable versions of the Vow in English and Spanish.