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Peace Be with You: Justified Warfare or the Way of Nonviolence [Paperback]

By Eileen Egan (Author)
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Item description for Peace Be with You: Justified Warfare or the Way of Nonviolence by Eileen Egan...

Peace Be with You: Justified Warfare or the Way of Nonviolence by Eileen Egan

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Wipf & Stock Publishers
Pages   352
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9" Width: 6.44" Height: 0.73"
Weight:   1.09 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 1, 2004
Publisher   Wipf & Stock Publishers
ISBN  159244797X  
ISBN13  9781592447978  

Availability  0 units.

More About Eileen Egan

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Eileen Egan has been a co-worker of Mother Teresa since 1955. A high-ranking member of Catholic Relief Services, involved in worldwide ministry to refugees and the needy, she has contributed articles to varoius magazines and newspapers including The Catholic Worker. She has published one previous book, The Works of Peace, and contributed to War or Peace, The Causes of World Hunger, and other collections. She is also the founder of Pax Christi USA and a representative of that organization to the UN.

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Four Stars  Jan 5, 2004
I had a five minute conversation with Eileen Eagan in 1972. The experience taught me nothing, in fact I had no real idea who she was. I was expecting to be drafted, and had been briefly introduced to her at a holiday party. The headlines were then echoing the disquiet of the final fury of the Vietnam war. I asked her about the morality of war, and she did not give an easy answer. She said she had given thought to a book on the subject.

Only in the last couple of years have I learned that she spent a very busy life, far below the radar, closely associated with a collection of people who made headlines. She was a Catholic nun. Among her close friends were Dorothy Day and Mother Teresa. She had a long and prolific career as an author and was a pacifist, and her life's work is the story of all the major social causes from the 40's through her death in 2000.

"Peace Be With" You struggles with an unseen adversary, and the conclusion of the struggle is not clear. Beginning with Jesus, who does not take up arms against an empire, the same moral conflicts repeat themselves in war-stories from the interests of Christians in the defense of imperial Rome through the last wars of the twentieth century. The author seems outraged by the human and moral costs of Vietnam, Kuwait and Bosnia. At the same time, war-resistance itself is sliding on a "slippery slope".

The first hundred pages of the book are the history of the slow acceptance of justified warfare by Christianity, which culminates in Francis of Assisi making a "separate peace" with Islam after the Thirteenth Crusade, meeting muslims on a human level.

The later 200 pages are purely twentieth century. The author attempts to weaken and dislodge the "Just War" theory, but she does not claim to have defeated it.

After spending the length of World War II writing for the Catholic Worker, increasingly unpopular for its insistent pacifism, the author offers an anguished conversation with Dorothy Day in 1945:

- If I had known all this while it was happening, would I have been able to maintain my pacifism? -

Mahatma Gandhi was in perfect agreement with Jesus on non-violence, but once said that he had yet to meet a Christian!

I am glad someone wrote a book on this subject. Since Kuwait it has become more instinctive to justify warfare, because there are wars fought in the name of democracy and preservation of freedom. The valor of young soldiers, and the fragility of our freedom make it difficult to keep a balance. The service owed to peace gets pushed out of the picture. Eileen Egan is one of those people who "have seen a lot". Her accounts of her "Prophets of Nonviolence" are often firsthand. She lived a valiant life of service, and she wrote an interesting book.

Peace, Whenever Possible, Be With You  Aug 30, 2001
The late Eileen Egan was a wonderful woman, a marvelous example of what it means to be a Catholic Christian. In this book, she presents a number of reasons why we must choose peace (e.g., Mt 26:52). One should not think, however, that the Catholic Church requires pacifism (e.g., Lk 22:36). While conscientious objection is permissible and sometimes encouraged or even required (cf. CCC 2242 and 2311, Acts 5:29), the Church has historically and traditionally taught that armed defense "can be not only a right but a grave duty" (CCC 2265; cf. 2240). In her enthusiasm for pacifism, Eileen Egan exults over some texts (Is 2:4, Micah 4:3), while wholly neglecting others (Joel 4:10); and she ignores the clear biblical, traditional, and catechetical teaching of the Church about just war (CCC 2308,2309; and Gaudium et Spes, #79; Mt. 22:21, 1 Pt 2:13-15, Romans 13, etc.). If we give thanks for wonderful people like Eileen Egan, so, too, must we recall that our fallen race has its share of Hitlers and Saddams and Pol Pots and Idi Amins--and as our faith tells us never to prosecute remorseless war, it also reminds us that there can be remorseless peace. There are times, sadly, when "Legitimate defense is a grave duty for whoever is responsible for the lives of others or the common good" (CCC 2321). Those who sanction all violence must speak to those who survived Hiroshima; but those who condemn all violence must speak to those rescued from Hitler's death camps in 1945 by soldiers who knew that sometimes, though we cry for peace (cf. Jer 8:11), we must resist evil, even with plowshares become swords....
Exhaustive look at pacifism & just war  Apr 17, 2001
I used this book as a primary source for a research paper I was writing on the just war theory and pacifism. Loaded with loads of historical analysis and information, Egan really makes a strong case for the rise of pacifism. The author herself was instrumental in the American Catholic group Pax Christi, until her death in 2000. Her contemporaries (and friends) included noted activists Mother Theresa and Catholic Worker founder Dorthy Day. Egan uses not only the the first hand knowledge she has from her participation with Dorthy Day during Second Vatican Council's Gaudiem Et Spes formulation and the subsequent U.S. Bishops' The Challenge of Peace, she also researched the origins of just war (Aristotle) and of surrounding issues.

Chocked full of useful information, the book is by no means a light read. For a thoughtful reader willing to learn lots. You'll never see the world the same way again.


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