Friday, November 14, 2014

Greene, on violence as potentially "an imperfection of charity"

"'The Church is in the world, it is part of the suffering in the world, and though Christ condemned the disciple who struck off the ear of the high priest's servant, our hearts go out in sympathy to all who are moved to violence by the suffering of others.  The Church condemns violence, but it condemns indifference more harshly. Violence can be the expression of love, indifference never. One is an imperfection of charity, the other the perfection of egoism.  In the days of fear, doubt, and confusion, the simplicity and loyalty of one apostle advocated a political solution.  He was wrong, but I would rather be wrong with Saint Thomas than right with the cold and the craven.  Let us go up to Jerusalem and die with him.'"

     The priest at the "Mass for Joseph and the other dead men (all three were Catholics), and Jones, whose beliefs were not known," on Jn 11:16, in Graham Greene, The comedians III.iv.4 ((New York:  Viking Press, 1966), 305).

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