Ukraine, Parolin: “Weapons? If attacked, peoples have the right to defend themselves”

The Vatican Secretary of State: “The catechism of the Catholic Church provides for legitimate defense, but this legitimate armed defense must be exercised within certain conditions”

“The Church follows the example of her Lord: she believes in peace, works for peace, fights for peace, testifies to peace and tries to build it. In this sense she is pacifist”. This is what the cardinal Secretary of State affirms Pietro Parolin in an interview with Limes. Regarding the use of arms, he states that “the catechism of the Catholic Church provides for legitimate defense. Peoples have the right to defend themselves if attacked. But this legitimate armed defense must be exercised within certain conditions that the catechism itself lists: that all other means to put an end to the aggression have proved impracticable or ineffective; that there are well-founded reasons for success; that the use of weapons does not cause evils and disorders more serious than those to be eliminated “.

“War begins in the heart of man. Every bloody insult drives peace away and makes any negotiation more difficult,” Parolin emphasizes in the interview. “The Pope’s voice is often vox clamantis in desert (‘a voice crying in the desert’). It is a prophetic voice, of far-sighted prophecy. It is like a sown seed, which needs fertile ground to bear fruit. the main actors of the conflict do not take his words into consideration, unfortunately, nothing happens, there is no end to the fighting “.

“Even today – continues Parolin – in the tragic Ukrainian affair, there does not seem to emerge at the moment a willingness to enter into real peace negotiations and to accept the offer of a super partes mediation. As is evident, it is not enough for one of the parties to propose it or hypothesize it unilaterally, but it is essential that both express their will in this sense. Once again … vox clamantis in Deserto. But the Pope’s words nevertheless remain a testimony of the highest value, which affects many consciences, making them more aware the men who initiate peace and war in our hearts and whom we are all called to make our contribution to promote the former and avoid the latter “.

Parolin acknowledges “the possibility of a negative leap towards the joining of the pieces in a real world conflict. I believe that we are not yet able to predict or calculate the consequences of what is happening. Thousands of deaths, cities destroyed, millions of displaced people, the devastated natural environment, the risk of famine due to the lack of wheat in many parts of the world, the energy crisis … feasible prospect is that of stopping weapons and promoting a just and lasting peace? “