American priest and anti-war activist (1923-2002)
Philip Berrigan (October 5, 1923 – December 6, 2002) was an American Christian anarchist and peace activist.
- The church is a major bureaucracy, and major bureaucracies are disobedient to the gospel.
- Fighting the Lamb's War: Skirmishes with the American Empire (1996), p. 38
- The Biblical view of the law, the courts, and the state is profoundly radical. The Bible looks upon the state as a kind of rebellious artifice; it is spurious, a human creation in rebellion against God.
In the Old Testament, when the first state is proposed in the person of Saul, the first King of Israel, God tells the prophet Samuel that this project spells rejection of God. The state and its legislature are in rebellion against, or rejection of, God. Its courts are a human fabrication, cannot promote justice and peace; they are founded in violence, and legalize violence.
The state holds together through police power, against the citizenry.
The state, conceived in violence, and backed by violence, will never achieve true peace.
- Fighting the Lamb's War: Skirmishes with the American Empire (1996), p. 202
- We Christians forget (if we ever learned) that attempts to redress real or imagined injustice by violent means are merely another exercise in denial — denial of God and her nonviolence towards us, denial of love of neighbor, denial of laws essential to our being.
- Fighting the Lamb's War: Skirmishes with the American Empire (1996), p. 204
- According to a University of South Carolina study, violence in America rose 42 percent during the Vietnam War. This is hardly surprising. Our leaders are lawless, so why not we? If the government threatens other countries with the bomb, why not threaten one another with handguns? If our leaders are raping the planet, why not our neighbors? Our leaders create a climate of fear and violence. Why do they appear shocked when Americans kill, rob, and maim one another?
- Fighting the Lamb's War: Skirmishes with the American Empire (1996), p. 217