We emphasize that a true Christian has no right to violent self-defense, to train for war, or to serve as a soldier because all of these are a flagrant contradiction of Christ’s teaching about love, especially love of the enemy, which He and His Apostles so often emphasized. An irreconcilable contradiction exists between what is generally taught in the Catholic Church about violent self-defense, training and arming to fight, and the “just defensive war” and Jesus’ commands of love of neighbor and enemy, as we see in the Gospels, the letters of the Apostles and in the lives of the early Christians who refused to go to war.
If the question of violent self-defense were simply about what is natural to animals, man being an animal, it would be fruitless to deny to someone, who considers only the natural and not the supernatural, the right to violently defend himself. However, we have to view this as a supernatural issue, that is, from a Christian perspective, because humanity does not live only in state of nature but also in a state of redemption made possible by Christ. As Christians, we have to consult revelation if we do not want to err, but the advocates of violent self-defense are greatly embarrassed when we ask them to support their views with the Gospels.
You Shall Not Kill (1944)
*Great is the power of steady misrepresentation.
*A person can neither evaluate as true or false, nor choose to live, an idea that he or she has never heard.