Thursday, July 14, 2016

Expectations for Peace-making

"From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required;
and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded."

Jesus of Nazareth

I get regular email reminders of the work of the Global Peace Index which has been published by the Institute for Economics & Peace over the past decade. The IEP describes its mandate in this way:

The Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank dedicated to shifting the world’s focus to peace as a positive, achievable, and tangible measure of human well-being and progress.

Once again Canada ranks in the top ten nations using a range of criteria measuring peacefulness. While we might consider North America to be generally more peaceful than other regions of the world our American neighbours rank a rather dismal 113th and Mexico at 140 of 163 nations included. Almost precisely 50% of nations trended toward being more peaceful in 2015 while the other 50% became less peaceful.

We are so fortunate folks, to live in this country of relative peace and prosperity. I have reported on the Index in past years and I am repetitive in my reminder that we have been immeasurably blessed, so we must set high expectations for our generosity and compassion and peace-making.

As Canadian Christians we are called to work on behalf of First Nations peoples who do not experience equality or peace, and to welcome refugees. We can support federal government initiatives for women's health in developing countries. We simply can't be smug about our relative peace and prosperity. If we aren't sure about this, we can simply turn to the gospels and read the words of Jesus.


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