Policy Engagement



New START: Catholic-Evangelical Dialogue on Nuclear Disarmament

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Photo: “IMG_1935” by Devin Ford is licensed under

Time: Wed Oct 21, 2020, 2:00PM - 3:00PM - Virtual Event

New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty), the last remaining nuclear weapons agreement between the United States and Russia, expires in February 2021 unless both sides agree to a five-year extension.  

With the deadline for renewal just months away, what are the current prospects for New START? How does its renewal fit into the wider ethical and policy debates on nuclear arms control and disarmament? And how can Catholic and Evangelical Protestant communities mobilize in support of the agreement?

Join us for a panel discussion featuring prominent Evangelical and Catholic leaders and scholars, who will explore these timely and important issues.

View Video of Event Here

Are Nuclear Weapons an Absolute Evil?

Time: Mon Oct 5, 2020, 7:30PM - 8:30PM - Location: Virtual Event

Featuring The Most Reverend Joseph Mitsuaki Takami, Archbishop of Nagasaki and President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan. During this virtual event, the Archbishop will offer personal reflections on the atomic bombings, as well as his perspective on the moral and policy challenges of pursuing a world free of nuclear weapons. 

Fountain Of Peace Nagasaki Peace Park
Fountain Of Peace Nagasaki Peace Park, Photo Credit: annintofu

Catholics Commemorate 75 Years after Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Online Video Premiere, August 3, 2020, 9:00am EST

On August 6 and 9, 1945, two atomic weapons were detonated over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The bombs shattered the cities, immediately killing thousands of people. For months and years afterward, people continued to die from burns, radiation sickness, and other injuries caused by radiation. On a visit to Nagasaki in November 2019, Pope Francis spoke forcefully on the abolition of nuclear weapons, saying “A world of peace, free from nuclear weapons, is the aspiration of millions of men and women everywhere. To make this ideal a reality calls for involvement on the part of all.” This year on the seventy-fifth anniversary of the bombings, prominent Catholics in the United States and Japan are working together in solidarity and friendship to promote a world free of nuclear weapons.

Building on the Holy Father’s appeal, this commemoration recalls in solidarity the tragic devastation wreaked by nuclear warfare. Archbishop Mitsuaki Takami and Bishop David Malloy offer short reflections on the meaning of the bombings today. Archbishop Takami recalls the personal tragedies inflicted on his family, Bishop Malloy speaks to the need for nuclear disarmament, and together they offer prayers for peace. The event is moderated by Dr. Maryann Cusimano Love and incorporates a visual memorial of the destruction in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. 

This event is hosted by Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and the Catholic Peacebuilding Network, in partnership with the University of Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, Keough School of Global Affairs; Northwestern University’s Sheil Catholic Center; the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan's Japan Catholic Council for Justice and Peace; the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Office of International Justice and Peace; Catholic University of America’s Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies; the International Federation of Catholic Universities; and Pax Christi International. This is one of a series of initiatives of the Project on Revitalizing Catholic Engagement on Nuclear Disarmament. 

Catholics Commemorate 75 Years after Hiroshima and Nagasaki - Berkley Center, Georgetown University

Catholics Commemorate 75 Years after Hiroshima and Nagasaki/ - Kroc Institute NewsInterview with Most Reverend Mitsuaki Takami, archbishop of Nagasaki and president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan

The 75th Anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki: A Renewed Call for Our Day  - USCCB

 75 Years after the War – A Peace Message from the Catholic Bishops of Japan Protect All Life, Peace Is the Path of Hope - The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan

Joint Declaration On Hiroshima Day 2020 - German Commission for Justice and Peace and the Council of the Evangelical Church in Germany

75 Years after Hiroshima - How We Can Work toward Pope Francis' Vision - Drew Christiansen, S.J., America The Jesuit Review

OpEd on the 75th Anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki - Mayor of Nagasaki

Shifting the Nuclear Narartive - Erin Connolly, Berkley Forum

Resources for the 75th Anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki  - USCCB

Archbishop Tomasi Panel Discussion

The Pope and the Bomb: Beyond Deterrence

January 30-31, 2020, Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs, Washington,D.C.

Archbishop Tomasi with a panel discussing nuclear weapons

In an address at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial on November 24, 2019, His Holiness Pope Francis declared that “the use of atomic energy for purposes of war is today, more than ever, a crime not only against the dignity of human beings but against any possible future for our common home.”  The Pope and the Bomb: Beyond Deterrence conference held at Georgetown University brought together church leaders, diplomats, scholars, Catholic activists, and students to engage in the analysis and discussion of nuclear weapons non proliferation, disarmament and the Catholic church's unique role in working toward diminishing and eliminating nuclear weapons.  

For more information on this event please visit:  The Pope and the Bomb: Beyond Deterrence Conference

Thursday, January 30:  Lecture by Archbishop Tomasi     Thursday Schedule of Events

Friday, January 31:  Friday, Schedule of Events

Event Blog  -  Gerard Powers - The Church and Nuclear Disarmament in A Schizophrenic Time

Margaret Pfiel - The Pope and The Bomb Conference - Some Emerging Insights

Event Images   Video of Event   Event Blogs Posts   Kroc Institute News

The Pope in Nagasaki Urges Commitment to a World Free of Nuclear Weapons

During his historic visit to Japan, the Pope addresses the use and possession of  nuclear weapons, and urges world leaders to create a world free of nuclear weapons.

Vatican Transcript of Pope's Speech at the Atom Bomb Hypo Center Park in Nagasaki

Perspectives for a World Free from Nuclear Weapons and for Integral Disarmament 

The Vatican, November 10-11, 2017

The Vatican hosted a conference to address the complete elimination of nuclear weapons.  Present at the conference were 11 Nobel laureates, U.N. and NATO officials, and several nuclear powers.  Also in attendance were faculty and students from Catholic University, Georgetown University, and University of Notre Dame.  The purpose of the conference was to build consensus and support for a change in strategy from nuclear deterrence to complete nuclear disarmament.

Transcript of address by Pope Francis

More on this Event:

Gerard F. Powers, Nov. 6, 2017
Peace Policy 
"The Holy See's Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament" 

Skofstad, Nov. 7, 2017
Notre Dame News
"Faculty and Students to Participate in Vatican Meeting on Nuclear Disarmament"

Berkley Center, Nov. 15, 2017
"Pope Francis meets with Faculty and Students Attending Nuclear Disarmament Conference"

Colloquium on US-European Approaches to Nuclear Disarmament 

House of Lords and University of Notre Dame Global Gateway, London, UK, May 24-25, 2016

Catholic scholars, 40 Bishops, and policy experts from nine countries met in London to determine the primary issues to be addressed in order to build the conditions necessary for a world free of nuclear weapons.  Theological and moral issues and policy issues on which religious leaders and ethicists have a comparative advantage or can make a distinctive contribution were examined.  

This event was sponsored by the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies; 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; Institut für Theologie und Frieden; the Catholic Peacebuilding Network; Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs; and the Nuclear Threat Initiative.  It was hosted by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, the Rt. Hon. the Lord Browne of Ladyton and The Rt. Hon. the Lord McFall of Alcluith, and the University of Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and London Global Gateway.

More on this Event

NTI, May 2016.
NTI Newsroom
"Catholic Bishops and Scholars from Europe and the United States Renew Nuclear Disarmament Efforts"

Most Rev. Oscar Cantu, London, May 2016.
Transcript of Remarks to the Colloquium on Catholic Approaches to Nuclear Proliferation and Disarmament.
"On the Catholic Nuclear Initiative and Purpose of Colloquium"

"The Pope and the Bomb: New Nuclear Dangers and Moral Dilemmas" 

Washington, D.C., September 17, 2015

Event The Pope Vs The Bomb Transcript

More on this Event

NTI, Sept. 2015.
Nuclear Security Project Event
"Pope and Bomb"

From Nuclear Deterrence to Disarmament: Evolving Catholic Perspectives

Carnegie Council on Ethics, New York,  May 7, 2015

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Additional Reading

Gerard F.Powers, 2017.
Arms Control Today
"Nuclear Deterrence & Disarmament - Evolving Catholic Perspectives"

Video Link

Colloquium on Revitalizing Catholic Engagement on Nuclear Disarmament

Stanford University Hoover Institute, April 24-25, 2014

Stanford Colloquium 2014Stanford Colloquium on Nuclear Disarmament

This event hosted by former Secretary of State George Schultz, former Secretary of Defense William Perry, and former Senator Sam Nunn, brought together forty bishops, policy specialists, Catholic scholars and students to explore ways of making a world without nuclear weapons a reality.  The colloquium was the launch of a larger project intended to empower a new generation of Catholic bishops, scholars, professionals and students to address and re-engage in the ethical and policy challenges of reducing and eliminating nuclear weapons.

The colloquium was made possible by support from the Nuclear Threat Initiative and was sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Office of International Justice and Peace; Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies; Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs; and Boston College.

Additional Information

More on this Event

Paul Browne, April 2014.
Kroc Institute News
Bishops-Universities Commit to Revitalizing Catholic Engagement on Nuclear Disarmament

Paul Browne, April 2014
ND News
"Bishops, Notre Dame, and other Universities Encouraged by Schultz-Perry and Nunn; Commit to Revitalizing Catholic Engagement on Nuclear Disarmament"

Office of News and Public Affairs, May 2014.
Boston College Chronicle.
"A B C Presence in Catholic Forum on Nuclear Weapons"

USCCB, April 2014. 
"U.S. and European Catholic Bishops Call for Strategy to Eliminate Nuclear Weapons Globally"

Archbishop Etienne, April 2014.
Truth in Love
"Colloquium on Revitalizing Catholic Engagement on Nuclear Disarmament"