Is killing consistent with Christianity?


Would a Christian nation murder its enemies? Would Jesus murder his enemies?

Today in the newspaper there is a picture of American young men in a convertible waving an American flag, part of a protest around the White House, fueled by chants of “USA, USA.”  Is this blood lust? Is this nationalism consistent with Christianity? Will the Catholic bishops take this as a teaching moment and preach on lust which is not sexual, overtly, but still dominant? If we cannot imagine what Jesus would do today, what would Dorothy Day do?

Christian pacifism is about as popular today as Christian socialism and perhaps they are linked. If you are in favor of giving all you have to the poor, it is hard to imagine killing to defend property.

America’s revenge day, perhaps? Christian revenge seems an oxymoron, but perhaps we call it by different names, “seeking closure” perhaps.


Lots of comments in the papers, but only one, so far, that resonates with me:

It is hard to see how killing one more person does anything.

Admonitions against killing are mostly confined these days to abortion. Then again, dominant male behavior is often hard to criticize.

Yesterday we killed our enemy’s grandchildren; today we got ours after a decade. Do I feel safer after either act? Is that the correct measure?

Where is St. Augustine when we need him?

How do these acts measure up against the Gospels? Is it fair to look to my bishop to teach me today? I need to know what they think about all of this hooting and hollering.

Clara Oleson

West Branch

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