WASHINGTON—Representatives from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops joined 40 Roman Catholic bishops, scholars and policy specialists from nine countries at a colloquium in London, England, May 24-25, to voice moral concerns about nuclear proliferation and the urgent need for disarmament.
"The policy debate is ahead of the moral debate," said Bishop Oscar Cantú, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' (USCCB) Committee on International Justice and Peace. "We need to educate and empower new generations of Catholic leaders on the ethical and policy arguments for reducing and eliminating nuclear weapons."
The colloquium entitled "Catholic Approaches to Nuclear Proliferation and Disarmament" identified key issues, especially theological and moral issues, which need to be addressed in order to create the conditions for a world without nuclear weapons. It also highlighted policy issues on which religious leaders and ethicists have a comparative advantage or can make a distinctive contribution.
This event was sponsored by the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales; Deutsche Bischofskonferenz; Justice et Paix, Conférence des évêques de France; the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Office of International Justice and Peace; the University of Notre Dame's Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies; Institut fur Theologie und Frieden; the Catholic Peacebuilding Network; Georgetown University's Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs; and the Nuclear Threat Initiative.
The London Colloquium is part of an initiative in the United States to empower a new generation of Catholic bishops, scholars, professionals and students to address the ethical and policy challenges of reducing and eliminating nuclear weapons.
Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Bishop Oscar Cantú, Committee on International Justice and Peace, nuclear weapons, ethics, disarmament, nuclear proliferation
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Norma Montenegro Flynn
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