By John Dear, SJ

One of the most well-known acts of civil disobedience in U.S. history occurred in Catonsville, Md., on May 17, 1968, when nine people entered the local draft board office, took files into the parking lot, burned them with homemade napalm and awaited arrest. Their story made front-page news around the country, in part because two of the nine were well-known Catholic priests — brothers Daniel and Philip Berrigan. Their subsequent trial and imprisonment energized the growing anti-war movement but also dramatically challenged the widespread notion that all Christians, especially Roman Catholics, supported U.S. war-making.

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