Pope Pius XI explained that if we want peace in politics, we must first seek the spiritual peace of Jesus.
Politics has a tendency to divide, whether its families or nations. This can be distressing, and the quest for peace among political parties can appear out of reach.
What is the remedy for this division?
Pope Pius XI believed it was the peace of Jesus Christ.
He explained his thoughts in his encyclical, Ubi Arcano.
First, and most important of all, for mankind is the need of spiritual peace. We do not need a peace that will consist merely in acts of external or formal courtesy, but a peace which will penetrate the souls of men and which will unite, heal, and reopen their hearts to that mutual affection which is born of brotherly love.
The peace of Jesus is the only lasting peace that is possible in this world. If an external peace is not somehow rooted in that truth, it will likely fall.
Pius XI wrote these words in 1922, after the conclusion of World War I. The peace established was unfortunately only an illusion, as history has proved.
Peace indeed was signed in solemn conclave between the belligerents of the late War. This peace, however, was only written into treaties. It was not received into the hearts of men, who still cherish the desire to fight one another and to continue to menace in a most serious manner the quiet and stability of civil society. Unfortunately the law of violence held sway so long that it has weakened and almost obliterated all traces of those natural feelings of love and mercy which the law of Christian charity has done so much to encourage. Nor has this illusory peace, written only on paper, served as yet to reawaken similar noble sentiments in the souls of men.
It was an external peace, “written” on paper. This type of peace will never endure.
The remedy that can correct this false peace comes from Jesus Christ.
The only remedy for such state of affairs is the peace of Christ since the peace of Christ is the peace of God, which could not exist if it did not enjoin respect for law, order, and the rights of authority.
It is our duty to pray for the peace to reign in the hearts of all, but we too can help establish that peace.
But peace does not consist merely in a hard inflexible justice. It must be made acceptable and easy by being compounded almost equally of charity and a sincere desire for reconciliation. Such peace was acquired for us and the whole world by Jesus Christ, a peace which the Apostle in a most expressive manner incarnates in the very person of Christ Himself when he addresses Him, “He is our peace”…Therefore, the Apostle beholds in the work of Redemption, which is a work of justice at one and the same time, a divine work of reconciliation and of love. Of this peace of Christ, which dwells in our hearts and is, in effect, the love of God.
We must work together to reconcile with each other, healing divisions and putting into practice our love of neighbor.
If we want peace to reign on earth, it must come from God and from our own heart.