Women as Builders of Peace

Symposium Looks at Their Role

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ROME, MARCH 14, 2005 (Zenit.org).- Woman is a leader in the building of peace to the extent that she protects life, said participants at an international symposium in Rome.



The symposium on "Woman and the Culture of Peace" was held March 10 and organized by the Institute of Higher Studies on Woman of the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical University, and the European University of Rome.

Cristina Zucconi, president of the Institute of Higher Studies on Woman, opened the meeting by pointing out that behind violence lies injustice, and "behind injustice, unjust behavior is always hidden, there is always an unjust person."

"This means that peace cannot be improvised because it is a style of life oriented to justice and forgiveness, and it is a value that must be transmitted through education from childhood in the school and in the family, first school of socialization, and first and fundamental school of peace," said Zucconi.

In her address, Cristina López Schlichting, journalist of Spain's COPE radio network, said that unity, the sacrificing of oneself for others, loving commitment, and the testimony of a Christian family are the cultural parameters in which the culture of peace develops.

"My father and my mother have united forever, and together they face the difficulties, sorrows and joys of life," López said. "They are both different, but they love one another and, when they make a mistake, they ask for forgiveness. Can one imagine a greater testimony in favor of peace?

"It is not a question of moralism or an education in generic values. The attraction that the will experiences for Christian beauty is born from a meeting, from attraction to another person, the way a husband or wife live."

Legionary of Christ Father Paolo Scarafoni, rector of Regina Apostolorum, said that evil is not overcome by evil.

"Evil is attested when people remove themselves from the exigencies of love. Good, instead, is born from love, is manifested as love, and is oriented to love," he said. "The culture of love passes from one generation to the next, above all, thanks to the efforts of women. The Pope has underlined this in his latest book 'Memory and Identity.'

"If the human family can overcome evil with good, it will depend to a large extent on the role of women today, on the transmission of the moral law, on education for a culture of peace."

"No man, no woman of good will, can remove himself or herself from the commitment to struggle to overcome evil with good," the rector added. "It is a struggle that is carried out validly only with the arms of love."