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Consistent Life Network

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The nonviolent activist and priest Daniel Berrigan at Cornell University, 1970.

Death Knell for Just War

The Vatican’s Historic Turn toward Nonviolence

The so-called just war theory is based on justifications by the pagan Cicero, not Jesus. In seventeen centuries of Christian life, we have perpetrated countless acts of horror and violence. Isn’t it now time to embrace Jesus’ way of nonviolence?

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Eileen Egan, a founder of Pax Christi USA and a close friend of Dorothy Day, is credited with first describing the Christian’s defense of every life as a “seamless garment,” a reference to the clothing taken from Jesus at the crucifixion. She wrote, “In common with the early followers of Jesus, we view the protection of all life, from its conception to its end, as a seamless garment.”

In 1987 the Seamless Garment Network was established to unite organizations and individuals committed to advocating for a “consistent life ethic.” Although the term has occasionally proved convenient cover for politicians more committed to some life issues than others, the organization is determined to remain non-partisan. In 2002 it changed its name to Consistent Life Network to reflect a move toward a broader interfaith membership.

“We are committed to the protection of life, which is threatened in today’s world by war, abortion, poverty, racism, the death penalty, and euthanasia.…We challenge those working on all or some of these issues to maintain a cooperative spirit of peace, reconciliation, and respect in protecting the unprotected.…We serve the anti-violence community by connecting issues, building bridges, and strengthening the case against each kind of socially-approved killing by ­consistently opposing them all.” consistentlifenetwork.org

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