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'Widespread fear' causes Vatican to republish Pacem in Terris

The Vatican has decided to republish Pope John XXIII's 1963 encyclical Pacem in Terris because we're now experiencing a time of fear comparable with that of the Cold War 40 years ago.

Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Angelo Sodano wrote the introduction to the republished volume, which was issued by the Vatican Publishing House. Sodano's introduction is followed by a presentation by Archbishop Renato Martino, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, and then by John Paul II's Message for the 2003 World Day of Peace.

A widespread feeling of fear is the link between the two periods of history separated by four decades, Cardinal Sodano says in the preface.

Forty years ago, there was fear over the armaments race and nuclear threat. Today, fear is due to the "phenomenon of terrorism evidenced in all its horror," he writes.

Cardinal Sodano recalls the four pillars proposed by John XXIII - truth, justice, love, freedom - for the construction of peace, which call for respect of a person's dignity and rights, fulfillment of duties, awareness of belonging to the world community, and need for a supranational authority.

For his part, Archbishop Martino points out other elements in Pacem in Terris of present importance, such as the waste of resources used in armaments, the interdependence of nations, the relations of exploitation between the world's North and South, and the need to reinforce the United Nations.


Pacem in Terris: Encyclical of Pope John XXIII on Establishing Universal Peace in Truth, Justice, Charity, and Liberty (April 11, 1963)
40th Anniversary of Pacem in Terris (Australian Catholic Social Justice Council 11/4/03)
John XXIII's peace message maintains relevance after 40 years (11/4/03)
Pax Christi president says 1963 peace encyclical remains relevant (Catholic News Service)
Pope Recalls Anniversary of "Pacem in Terris" (Zenit)
Archbishop Martino Stresses Importance of UN (Zenit)
Pacem in Terris remembered (Independent Catholic News)
Pope proposes 1963 encyclical as response to terrorism (5/7/03)
John Paul II Laments World's Lack of Progress Toward Peace (Zenit 8/9/03)
The Social Justice Teaching 'Canon' (
Pacem in Terris Institute
Vatican Publishing House

16 Sep 2003