ROME — Roman Catholics embarked Sunday on a new year with a new pope, who used the day's festivities to urge stronger faith in God as a way to make peace in a world threatened by "terrorism, nihilism and fanatic fundamentalism."
Benedict XVI, presiding over the first New Year's Day program of his papacy, led a morning Mass inside St. Peter's Basilica and afterward addressed thousands of pilgrims gathered in the square outside. The Vatican marks Jan. 1 annually by celebrating World Day of Peace, a theme that infused Benedict's comments Sunday.
"A leap of courage and of faith in God and in mankind" are crucial to promoting global peace, the pope said.
It is the duty of everyone — of individuals, world powers and international organizations — to take up the cause, he said, singling out the United Nations and its responsibility to further justice and solidarity in a world confronting the "phenomenon of globalization."
Pope Benedict XVI makes some good points in this article. Each of the groups -- individuals, world powers, and international organizations -- have shown a depressing lack of consistency in their response to evil in our world.
Christians are called to be a part of this process by God, and have responded in many ways. Bread For The World and the One Campaign are two such organizations. The One Campaign, in particular, is a multi-pronged approach to the issues of hunger: Aids, debt relief, extreme poverty. These are issues of justice as well as compassion. Micah 6:6-8 and Matthew 25:31-46 make this abundantly clear.