Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Advent calls believers to reflection, peace

Catholic News Service reports on an event down the Hudson in Garrison, stomping ground of former Governor George Pataki:
During Advent, Catholics are called to "put on the armor of light, to be peacemakers beating swords of war and anger into plowshares, and to poke holes of light into the darkness which often seems to permeate our lives," according to Dominican Sister Anne Tahaney.

"The common themes of Advent, expectation and waiting in joyful hope call us to reflection and peace, yet tension and stress surround us in our own personal lives, and war and death and destruction loom daily before us in newscasts," she said.

Sister Tahaney spoke Dec. 2 at an Advent vespers service at Graymoor, headquarters of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement. Others were scheduled to speak Dec. 9, 16 and 23.

This year's speakers were asked to reflect on "A Common Word Between Us and You," an October 2007 letter to Pope Benedict XVI and other Christian leaders signed by 138 senior Muslim leaders and later endorsed by dozens of others.

The letter highlights two theological similarities found in both the Quran and the New Testament: belief in one God and love of neighbor. The letter also proposes theological dialogue to find common ground.

"Finding common ground between Muslims and Christians is not simply a polite ecumenical dialogue between selected religious leaders," the Muslims wrote. "Christianity and Islam ... together make up more than 55 percent of the world's population, making the relationship between these two religious communities the most important factor in contributing to meaningful peace around the world.

You can read more here.