A Reflection from Saint Augustine
In this time of war and rumors of war, we are challenged as Christians to live the Gospel message of peace.
Saint Augustine, in his Letter to Darius (Letter 229, written in the year 429), makes the point that seeking peace through peace is better than seeking peace through war. We offer for your reflection these words of Augustine in praise of peace.
From a Letter of Augustine to Darius
...These features of your character are joyfully seen both by us, and through the mercy of God by yourself also, as in a mirror in the holy Gospel, in which it is written in words uttered by Him who is truth: "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."
Those warriors are indeed great and worthy of singular honor, not only for their consummate bravery, but also (which is a higher praise) for their eminent fidelity, by whose labors and dangers, along with the blessing of divine protection and aid, enemies previously unsubdued are conquered, and peace obtained for the State, and the provinces reduced to subjection.
But it is a higher glory still to stay war itself with a word, than to slay men with the sword, and to procure or maintain peace by peace, not by war.
For those who fight, if they are good persons, doubtless seek for peace; nevertheless it is through blood.
Your mission, however, is to prevent the shedding of blood. Yours, therefore, is the privilege of averting that calamity which others are under the necessity of producing.
... May God "strengthen that which He hath wrought for us through you."
... I salute with due affection the pledge of peace, which through the favor of our Lord and God you have happily received.
--From the Augustinian Secretariate for Justice and Peace