What does Gospel nonviolence look like in action? The Fellowship of Reconciliation held a joint conference with the Anglican Pacifist Fellowship looking at this, and included a talk from the Revd David Mumford. Over a series of 14 blogs, some short and some longer, he outlines the different themes and topics covered in his presentation.
Christian nonviolence is rooted in a commitment to following Jesus, whether that ‘works’ or not. For some Christians that leads to quietism in which their task is to be faithful whilst awaiting the gift of the coming Kingdom. Such a stance may involve refusal to obey unjust state demands, such as conscription.
Nonetheless, a reflection on ways in which love and nonviolence can be expressed in action will assist pacifists in countering any assertion that to be a pacifist is to be passive in the face of injustice. The renunciation of war and violent methods of settling conflicts can open the way to creatively discover other approaches to conflict resolution which in many ways will deepen people’s spirituality and enable them to walk more closely with God.