“But now in Christ Jesus, you that used to be so far apart from us have been brought very close, by the blood of Christ. For he is the peace between us, and has made the two into one and broken down the barrier which used to keep them apart, actually destroying in his own person the hostility caused by the rules and decrees of the Law. This was to create one single ‘New Man’ in himself out of the two of them and by restoring peace through the cross, to unite them both in a single body and reconcile them with God. In his own person he killed the hostility. Later he came to bring the good news of peace, peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near at hand. Through him, both of us have in the one Spirit our way to come to the Father.”
Peace I bequeath to you,
my own peace I give you,
a peace the world cannot give, this is my gift to you.
“Those who have not yet received the gospel are related in various ways to the people of God:
“In the first place there is that people to whom the covenants and the promises were made and from whom Christ was born according to the flesh. On account of their fathers, this people remains most dear to God, for God does not repent of the gifts He makes nor of the calls He issues.
“But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the creator. In the first place among these there are the Muslims; they profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and along with us adore the one and merciful God, who will judge mankind on the last day.
“Nor is God himself far distant from those who in shadows and images seek the unknown God, for it is He who gives to all men life and breath and every other gift, and who as Saviour wills that all men be saved.” Excerpted from the Constitution on the Church of the Second Vatican Council; from the Week 2 of the Year: Wednesday Office of Readings.