Should Christian Leaders Defend Islam?

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Is there such a thing as bad religion? Or is religion by its very nature a good thing? Throughout most of history, most people wouldn’t have hesitated to label some religions as bad. The Romans condemned the child-sacrificing religion of the Carthaginians, Christians condemned the Aztec religion for its human sacrifice, and Catholics condemned Arians and Albigensians as heretics.

The contemporary take on this question is altogether different. With the exception of some rabid atheists, most people—even those of no particular faith—have a positive view of religion. And Christians, especially, seem well-disposed to people of other faiths. Serious Christians are much more likely to be worried about the dangers inherent in secularism than the dangers posed by another religion. The current attitude seems to be that in the battle against secularism, people of faith—no matter what their faith—ought to stick together.

One might expect that the return of militant Islam to the world stage would put a damper on this benign view of religion, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Many Christians still take the attitude that if you’re a religion, you’re part of the family and we’ll stick up for you. As an example, recent popes have been adamant in their opposition to secularism, but have been reluctant to criticize Islam. For them, the major conflict of our age is not between religion and religion but between religion and unbelief. Of course, there is plenty of justification for that view. The struggle between atheism and belief which was the chief preoccupation of Pope St. John Paul II was indeed the defining struggle of the twentieth century. He may have been concerned about Islam, but there was little indication that he saw anything inherently wrong with it—as he did with Nazism and communism. He once kissed the Koran, but one cannot imagine that he would ever have done the same with Mein Kampf or the Communist Manifesto.

As suggested by his Regensburg address, Pope Benedict XVI had a more critical view of Islam than his predecessor, but on the whole he seems to have adopted the position that believers are in one camp and secularists in another. When asked in a lengthy interview with journalist Peter Seewald if the Vatican was following a different policy from earlier popes who “thought it their duty to save Europe from Islamization,” Benedict replied: “Today we are living in a completely different world in which the battle lines are drawn differently. In this world, radical secularism stands on one side, and the question of God, in its various forms, stands on the other.” (Light of the World, p. 100) Elsewhere in the interview, Benedict speaks of Christians and Muslims as being on “the same side of a common battle” to defend “faith in God and obedience to God” (p. 99).

Pope Francis appears to have an even more positive attitude toward Islam. In Evangelii Gaudium, he asserted that “authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.” More recently, in a talk to refugees, he encouraged them to look to the sacred writings of their traditions: “those that are Christian, with the Bible, and those that are Muslim, with the Qur’an. The faith that your parents instilled in you will always help you move on.”

The view that our commonalities with Islam are more important than our differences is widely shared by Christians and is especially strong among Catholics. But what if this view is mistaken? Not to put too fine a point on it, what if Osama bin Laden’s interpretation of Islam is closer to the original than that of moderate Muslims? In his interview with Seewald, Pope Benedict refers on two occasions to the “tradition of tolerant and good coexistence between Islam and Christianity” that prevails in large parts of Sub-Saharan Africa. And he sees this as a hopeful sign that rapprochement is possible between the two faiths. The thing is, the Islam practiced in that region tends to be of the folk religion type, and it typically incorporates elements of other faiths. In other words, it’s a far cry from authentic, made-in-Mecca, by-the-book Islam. While folklore Islam may be more compatible with Christianity, it does not have as strong a claim as does the Islam of the Middle East to be following the authentic tradition of the prophet. Islam is very much a by-the-book religion, and all the books—the Koran, the Hadith, the Sira, and the sharia law manuals—provide more textual support to militant Muslims than to moderate ones. As one observer put it, “Moderate Islam is a cultural habit, radical Islam is authentic Islam.”

Which Islam is the more authentic? Some scholars assert that both interpretations—the more peaceful and the more militant—are equally valid. But unless you believe that Islam is like a Rorschach test that can be interpreted in an infinite number of ways, one side or the other has to have the better of the argument. As I’ve indicated elsewhere, I believe the militants have the better case, but rather than go over those arguments again, I prefer to call attention to some of the consequences for Islam’s Catholic defenders if the militant view of things turns out to be the more accurate one. If bin Laden and company have the better side of the argument and if Church leaders continue to stand by Islam as a brother religion, I see several negative consequences for the Church.

The first negative consequence of this stand-by-my-Islam approach is that it creates confusion for many Catholics. The average Catholic who keeps abreast of the news and who is not committed to upholding any particular narrative about Islam will have noticed by now that there is something wrong with Islam. And as more is revealed about Islam and sharia law, it will become more and more difficult for that average Catholic to give credence to the notion that all the many problems with Islam have nothing to do with the real Islam. Continued expressions of “deep respect” for Islam by Church leaders won’t do much to increase respect for Islam, but they might serve to lessen the respect that Catholics have for their own leaders. As the gap between what the bishops say and what the news reveals increases, the credibility of the Church’s teachings will come into question.

Such an approach also tends to devalue the sacrifices of those Christians in Muslim lands who have had the courage to resist submission to Islam. It must be highly discouraging to be told that the religion in whose name your friends and relatives have been slaughtered is prized and esteemed by the Church. Moreover, this semi-official ‘endorsement” of Islam also does a disservice to the many Muslims who have their doubts about traditional Islam, and to the many Muslims who suffer under the weight of sharia law. When “the faith that your parents instilled in you” involves genital mutilation, forced marriages, honor killings, and amputations, Catholic prelates should be careful about statements or gestures that seem to validate that faith.

Another unintended consequence of the Catholic tendency to put the best possible face on Islam is that it strengthens the atheist/secularist argument that all religions are cut from the same cloth. The Church is frequently accused by its foes of being totalitarian and intolerant. If Church leaders keep making excuses for a religion that actually is totalitarian and intolerant, those charges may begin to stick. The stock of atheists such as Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens received a considerable boost in the wake of 9/11. That’s because they were able to convince a lot of people that violence is the place where religion inevitably leads. And their portrayal of Islam and Christianity as twin brothers—the one only slightly less violent and misogynist than the other—may well have contributed to the recent sharp decline in Christian numbers. Merely from a tactical standpoint, then, Church leaders ought to be cautious about doing or saying things that reinforce this simplistic view of Christianity. If Catholics want to avoid even more defections from the Church, they need to think twice about emphasizing their common ground with Islam. At a time when even liberals are beginning to question Islam, it may be time for the Church to consider the benefits of distancing itself from its fellow “Abrahamic” faith.

Of course, if it’s true that Christianity and Islam are just two branches of the same faith, it’s incumbent on Church authorities to say so, no matter what others may think. But if it’s not true—if Islam is, in fact, inherently violent—then, by keeping to the current course, Church authorities are setting themselves up for a scandal of epic proportions—one that could easily dwarf the sex abuse scandals. What I said on the subject two years ago seems even more pertinent today:

Much of the damage from those scandals was caused by the revelation that some priests and bishops had covered up for them. The Church’s current policy of seeking common ground with Islam is a well-intentioned interreligious gesture. It’s not meant as any sort of cover-up; but, in effect, it minimizes the rather large gap that divides Islam and Christianity…. As the threat from a resurgent Islam becomes more apparent, Catholics may well begin to feel that they have been misled on an issue vital to their security. The complaint against the Church will shift from “Why didn’t Church officials do more to protect children?” to “Why didn’t they tell us the rest of the story about Islam?” (Christianity, Islam, and Atheism, pp. 103-104)

Thus far, the ones being scandalized are fellow Christians who, when they look at Islam, no longer see the smiley face that some Church leaders have pasted on it. But that may be only the beginning. Up until now, the secular world hasn’t called out the Church for “covering up” for Islam because it has been even more deeply involved in the same cover-up. If that should change, the Church will be left in the unenviable position of being almost the sole non-Muslim apologist for Islam. And there are signs that liberal opinion-makers may be re-aligning their position on Islam. Pundits on the left and the right—on CNN as well as Fox News—now feel free to bash sharia law, as they did not in the past. Even the Hollywood crowd is having second thoughts. Recently, a number of prominent Hollywood stars staged a well-publicized boycott of the Beverly Hills Hotel as a protest against its owner, the Sultan of Brunei, and his plans to impose sharia law in that country.

It’s too early to tell if any real change of heart is underway, but, if history is any guide, it teaches us that leftists and liberals can turn on a dime. And once they do, they have a knack of convincing everyone that their new opinion—whatever it is—is what they have always believed. If that happens in regard to Islam, the secularists will then turn on the Church with a vengeance. They will claim that they have always stood against sharia and that the Church has always supported it. They will claim that the Church covers up for Islam in order to hide its own very similar sins. They will claim that the Church, like Islam, hates women and freedom, and the proof will lie in the Church’s stated “esteem” for Islam. In other words, the Church’s search for common ground with Islam—an approach which at first seemed so sensible—may turn out to be a foolish and dangerous pursuit.

As I’ve indicated above, if Islam really is the “high and honorable” faith that one Catholic apologist says it is, then it shouldn’t matter what Candy Crowley or Wolf Blitzer might have to say. But Catholics need to remind themselves that medieval Christians were not the only ones to make sharp distinctions between different religions or to think that some religions should be rejected. St. Paul, in his second letter to the Corinthians, warns against anyone who “comes and preaches another Jesus than the one we preached” (2 Cor 11:4). Jesus himself delivered a similar warning: “Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves” (Mt. 7:15).

Of course, Jesus couldn’t possibly have had someone like Muhammad in mind. Or could he? Unless Church leaders are quite certain that the “Prophet” is not included in the warning, they would do well to avoid statements that lend credibility to the Islamic faith. In Nostra Aetate, the council fathers wisely confined their discussion of Christian-Muslim relations to Muslims. No mention is made of Islam, the Koran, or Muhammad. It is one thing to acknowledge that individual Muslims can lead moral lives and that they can have a close relationship with God. It’s another thing to imply, through word or gesture, that Islam is a valid faith and the Koran a reliable guide to salvation.

 Editor’s note: The graphic above depicts the five Taliban detainees released from Guantanamo in a prisoner exchange on May 31, 2014. (Photo credit: Fox News)

William Kilpatrick

By

William Kilpatrick taught for many years at Boston College. He is the author of several books about cultural and religious issues, including Psychological Seduction; Why Johnny Can’t Tell Right From Wrong; and Christianity, Islam and Atheism: The Struggle for the Soul of the West. He is also the author of a new book entitled Insecurity. His articles have appeared in numerous publications, including Catholic World Report, National Catholic Register, Aleteia, Saint Austin Review, Investor’s Business Daily, and FrontPage Magazine. His work is supported in part by the Shillman Foundation.

  • Brennan Kingsland

    Chrislam is an evil concept, meant to delude Christians into accepting evil, rather than recognizing the truth about Islam and Allah. Christian leaders should absolutely NOT promote the fallacy of ‘Chrislam’.! Islam is diametrically opposed to the teachings of Jesus Christ. And, as far as I’m concerned, Allah is the devil, as the brutal and fundamentally evil teachings of Islam PROVE!

    • BillinJax

      Brennan,
      Hold to the truth you speak.
      When it comes to religion and we Christians see an obvious.lie in the center of any religion we know the father of all lies dwells therein.

  • jacobhalo

    The Catholic church should call Islam a false religion, as are any religions which are not Christian. Jews and Muslims do not worship the same God as we do. Jesus, God, was and is rejected by those religions. Jesus said the only way to the father is through me. Those religions do not go through Jesus to get to God.

    • richado

      St.John Damascene (of Damascus) called it a heresy in the 7th century. He is one of the Church Fathers. He lived in Damascus shortly after its conquest. He knew the religion first hand and wrote about as a heresy. Period.

      Peter the Venerable in the 11th century, I believe, also studied Islam in its original sources and made a translation of the Quran into Latin. He concluded it was heretical and almost pagan, as did his compatriots.

      And so on.

      The point is that we have known about the nature of Islam for a long time. It is only within the last fifty years or so- thanks to our culture being saturated with left lib pluralism- that we have been gradually mislead by the many shepherds who have drank of this toxic left lib tradition and religion to which we all must bow. Feelings, and not the truth, must dictate our actions-according to prevailing mindset of liberalism.

      And we also know that we are commanded by Christ to preach the gospel to all- baptizing in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Even to the point of martyrdom.

    • The Truth

      All religions have some fraction of the truth in them. but only one has all of the truth, the Roman Catholic Church. You either believe and convert to those teaching’s or you are against them. It’s really very simple.

      • 1Indioviejo1

        Islam is a satanic screed and the “truth” you may find in the Koran is called Takiyya.

    • TruthWFree

      “Jews and Muslims do not worship the same God as we do. ”

      Agree on Muslim; I think the allah god of the Quran is Satan.
      Disagree on Jews.
      The God of Abraham (which the Jews worship) is the same as the Father of Jesus. Jesus said, “I AM”, which is what the God of the Old Testament called Himself in speaking to Moses. (He also said He is ONE in Being with the Father, and when Phillip asked Him to show us the Father, He said, “You have seen Me, you have seen the Father”. He proved who He IS via the many miracles and bringing three people back from the dead, and finally rising on the Third Day….the reason we have our faith in HIM. The small number of Jews remaining just do not believe Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, One in Being with the Father, the God of Abraham, and Moses, and Noah and Adam.

      Today the Jews should number in the hundreds of millions. They only number about 14 million. They grew from Jacob’s tribe of 70 to almost 3 million during the time (420 years) in Egypt, and were likely about 7 million in Israel at the time of Jesus, many others spread throughout the world. Today, 2000 years later, they should number in the hundreds of millions. You will note in ACTS that many Jews were converted to belief in Jesus Christ on Pentecost. What I am saying is that many Jews after Christ’s Crucifixion were preached the Gospels by the 11 Jews that were disciples of Jesus and they became Christians, originally called “The Way”. Saint Paul also was a Jewish Pharisee who at first persecuted Christians, but by direct intervention by the Risen Christ, he turned to preaching the Gospel and was the most prolific apostle to the Gentiles.

      Read the Bible and the Gospels and ACTS and the letters of St. Paul and all the way through Revelations. I’ve read the Gospels many times and my faith increases with each reading. The Jewish Torah (Old Testament) is the foundation that Christianity was built on. Christ brought a New Covenant to man, first to the Jews, then to us Gentiles.

  • OneTimothyThreeFifteen

    I think we have to respect that Richard Dawkins has recently referred to himself as a ‘Secular Christian’, and not lump him with ‘the rest’.
    http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/commentandblogs/2014/05/30/now-we-know-why-dawkins-refused-to-sign-that-letter-from-atheists-condemning-camerons-we-are-a-christian-country-could-he-be-on-the-way-to-belief/

    • sybarite123

      I think you have to rethink your approval of R. Dawkins. Read more. Think more. After all he may have called himself a ‘Secular Christian’, but he remained an atheist to the end. Unfortunately the consequences of being an atheist very unfortunate, at least for a thinking man; and Dawkins was not stupid! I do acknowledge the article on atheism and the causes for its rise in Vatican II and the Constitution ‘Gaudium Spes’. Hence many thoughts of any atheist may be human & Catholic, but not all his thoughts! Also, many thoughts of a Muslim may be Christian, but not all.(See John, chapter 1, verse 9). A retired Catholic priest in Canada.

  • FernieV

    While it is true that Sharia Law stipulates amputation for certain crimes, like theft, genital mutilation is not part of Sharia: it is a traditional practice in many places as in the country I live, Nigeria, and it is practiced by Muslims and Christians alike. Honor killings are not part of Sharia either. It is practiced in Muslim countries, but is not part of Sharia: it is not practiced in Nigeria, for example, where half of its population is Muslim. Forced marriages are part of Islam, I believe, as women are not full subjects of rights but are meant under their men protectors (fathers, husbands, brothers…) all their lives.

    You may have included the abhorrent Sharia law that commands that an apostate of Islam should be brutally killed in your list of unacceptable issues that may make it unadvisable for Christian leaders to defend Islam…

    • sybarite123

      IMO ‘Honor Killings’ are inherent to Sharia Law. Those who are killed to protect the ‘Honor’ of the family are in fact considered as ‘Apostates’. From Canada.

    • gsk

      M. fueled the tradition of FGM by an off-hand remark to a questioner, in which he opined that intimacy was best when the “two circumcised parts touched.” Since his every opinion was codified as the best interpretation of divine will, the tradition has been closely associated with Islam ever since.

      Same with their approach to honour killings. If a religion doesn’t have a mechanism for repentance (confession) and doesn’t have a theology of original sin, then mistakes can only be attributed to ignorance or evil intent. We have to understand the limitations of Islam when it comes to understanding the human person.

      • FernieV

        Point 1: I am not a Muslim apologist. Point 2. There could be a hadith with the quote you mentioned which may have been used in some parts of the Muslim world to allow/legislate on FGM. What I am saying is that the practice is not generalized in the Ummah. In sub saharan Africa it is practiced by everyone, traditional believers, Christians and Muslims, although the practice is reducing significantly among the educated urban population.

        The same thing for honor killings for which you did not offer any source to prove that it is an exclusively Islamic practice. I have never heard of a single case in Nigeria, a half-Muslim country. I believe it is more common in Pakistan and in countries with Pakistani immigrants.

        I am convinced that Islam has to be shown in its true colors, but in order to do this it has to be done with unassailable facts.

  • gsk

    Brilliant points, Dr. Kilpatrick, especially the spectre of the secularists turning on Islam leaving the Church as its last defender. Our bishop recently visited the local Muslim school and praised it warmly, saying it reminded him of any Catholic school. Um, no.

    Polite discourse in this country stays on the surface of things, so most Christians never learn that Muslims believe that Christ will return as judge — but will start by smashing all the crosses; or that the great esteem they have for the Blessed Mother is because she remained a virgin — so that she could be given to Muhammed in paradise as his special treasure.

    The Insider Movement has fed this lie, and while the Church isn’t formally a part, the dithering of many of her ministers doesn’t help in clarifying these essential issues. We must read, study, and pray — because each will be held to account in various ways.

    http://feminine-genius.typepad.com/morning_star/

    • DE-173

      “Our bishop recently visited the local Muslim school and praised it warmly, saying it reminded him of any Catholic school.”

      Syncretism alert. Can you provide a name so we can keep score?

      • gsk

        I’ll leave it at “New England” (a google search will provide the rest). He’s a good man in many respects, but follows the pope’s lead on respecting other religions; unfortunately that hangs the rest of us out to dry as “haters.”

        • DE-173

          This is beyond “respect”.

  • Vinnie

    “Moderate Islam is a cultural habit, radical Islam is authentic Islam.”

    Moderate Catholicism is a cultural habit, radical Catholicism is the expectation of persecution in this world.

    • richado

      Not long ago PM Erdogan stated unequivocally there is no such thing ‘moderate Islam’. And he is right – there is no such thing. Only authentic Islam. Indonesian Muslim clerics also endorse a ‘no such thing as moderate Islam view.’ Also ask the Sultan of Brunei. Ask Boko Haram.

      We must remember Islam celebrates and practices the doctrine of taqiyya- that is, deception- to be used against and directed at all unbelievers.

      • Steve

        Yes, “moderate islam” is an oxymoron. Rather like “gay pride”

      • MarcAlcan

        I say that that the only good Muslim is a bad Muslim.

  • Art Deco

    It’s proper in certain circumstances for informed individuals to defend others from calumnies. It’s important that people be evaluated with deliberation according to impersonal procedures. It’s proper (and necessary) to be cordial to your neighbors. It can be prudent and useful to have some co-operative inter-religious projects. It’s not anyone’s job to ‘defend Islam’ per se.

    • Brennan Kingsland

      It is always prudent to know all the facts about people (and religions) that want to destroy you. For Christians to embrace Islam, and defend it’s precepts, is to embrace a snake to your breast.

    • DE-173

      “It can be prudent and useful to have some co-operative inter-religious projects. ”

      Find some Orthodox or Lutherans or Lutherans interested in some corporal work of mercy. They have nothing like this:

      “O believers,do not hold Jews and Christians as your allies. They are the allies of one another; and anyone who makes them his friends is surely one of them.”

      the Quran Sura 5, Verse 50

  • Andrew

    It is the job/mission given by Christ Himself to his Church; the Catholic Church; to convert the world; we aren’t to promote other “religions” or “beliefs” we must bring them to the absolute Truth of the Catholic Church. If our leaders; both clerical and laity; are supporting and promoting the other “religions of the world” as if they co-exist with the One True Faith; then that is a huge lie and scandal. May we be faithful at the mission and task that Christ gave us; in saving souls and converting everyone to His Church.

    • Megan

      Exactly

  • NE-Conservative

    Many years ago I challenged the Catholic tolerance and defense of Islam – it was a period of intense persecution of Christians in the Middle East and desecration of Christian churches and sacred locations in Jerusalem – in an exchange of letters with a prominent US spokesman for the Church. In the first few letters, he proclaimed all the usual defenses about the need to respect other opinions, not all Muslims adhere to the attack on other religions, etc. When I provided ‘chapter and verse’ of the attacks on Christianity AND the rape/murder of Christian and Jewish woman and children as well as men – the final comment was that if the Church took a militant stand against violent Muslims, it would only aggravate and anger more of them to retaliate against the Christians left in their Middle East and Muslim countries. So, the Church had to placate and soft-pedal their atrocities. It’s clear how that worked out.
    In a recent conversation, a Catholic sympathizer who works with Muslim refugees, gushed how grateful the little Muslim children were they were fed, given toys, clothing, shelter, etc. I was tempted to ask what she thought was in the eyes fo the 3- and 5-year old Jewish children who’s parents were raped and murdered by Muslims as they were forced watch before their own murder.
    Finally, I find it truly amazing how Francis can gush over the fate of the Palestinians surrounding Israel and bemoan the walls put up to prevent sneak attacks while implying the Jews are to blame for all the problems in the Middle East.

  • Megan

    Catholic Charities–US Conference of Catholic Bishops,
    the largest of all the federal refugee resettlement contractors reported
    revenue $72,102,484 included $66,723,452, which is approximately 93%, from
    federal funding. “Christian” organizations (like Catholic Charities, Lutheran Services, World Relief) have abandoned Jesus command to “go and make
    disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the
    Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have
    commanded you.”. They don’t want to offend other cultures. They want their BILLIONS
    from the American Taxpayers.
    When money becomes the motivation everyone loses. Good
    works/Social Justice mean nothing without the boldness of spreading the gospel.
    Civilized society falls apart without Christ. And the worst part is that the
    church is neglecting believers (like Christian Latinos and the persecuted
    church) and those are the people we are commanded biblically to care for– “Feed
    MY sheep”–not those who have, OVER and OVER AGAIN benefited from the goodness of
    Christianity and have still rejected Christ in favor of a religion that has
    declared Jihad against the very people who are helping them. These are the
    people our country has granted a pathway to citizenship, paid for educations,
    school meals, medical care, food stamps, housing for the 10 children of the 4
    wives each man is married to (3 wives benefit as unwed mothers-to get around polygamy laws).
    
Unconditional love is not a biblical word. Pop Christian/Catholic culture has disregarded the truth for a feel good/politically correct attitude and the church will suffer the consequences for its disobedience to a Righteous God.
    Whenever and wherever, throughout history that the Gospel has spread and Christ has become Supreme, prosperity and civility has ensued. There is a direct correlation between 3rd world countries and the rejection of Christ and the slaughter of Christians.
Yes we
    are called to love. But we are called to TRUTH-honesty, righteousness, sexual
    morality, humility, repentance, faithfulness goodness, kindness, diligence,
    generosity, self-control, and integrity. The Catholic Church has disregarded Truth.
    They should not be in the business of Social Justice. They should be in the business of spreading the Good News of Christ and teaching the world to follow and obey Him.
    Only the true humility of FOLLOWING Christ can combat the corruption of humanity.
(2 Chronicles 7:14) If MY PEOPLE who are called by MY name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will
    forgive their sin and heal their land.

  • cestusdei

    When I see Islam defend Christianity…I might be inclined to have a positive view of them. I am not holding my breath.

  • Objectivetruth

    Let’s look to St. Francis and his incredible story of trying to convert Muslim Sultan Suliman.

    Blessed Teresa of Calcutta was asked once what she gave the Hindu and Muslim Indians that caused so many to convert. “Was it the food, medicine, shelter you gave them, Mother?” “No,” Blessed Teresa simply replied. “I gave them Christ.”

    • DE-173

      Apparently she wasn’t wasn’t “just another NGO”.

    • mikidiki

      Was that before or after she denied that the work she did was for the glory of God since she only served Humanity?
      And what happened to the millions of dollars in her Charity which never went to aid the poor and homeless?
      And when she and her sisters participated in ceremonies of heretical religions?
      You can read all about via Google.

      • Objectivetruth

        “And what happened to the millions of dollars in her Charity which never went to aid the poor and homeless?
        And when she and her sisters participated in ceremonies of heretical religions?”

        Explain. Give specific examples and references. Most importantly, PROOF!

        If not, you have committed the great sin of bearing false witness and scandal against a great saint, and your eternal soul is in great jeopardy.

      • Objectivetruth

        Let’s dig deeper…..

        What is your PERSONAL beef against Mother Teresa?

        • mikidiki

          Hi,
          Since you are either too idle or too remote from the internet to access Google, I shall give you some brief information to set you along the path to a fuller understanding of Mother Teresa.

          Her private correspondence published in 2003 exposed her crisis of Faith during the last fifty years of her life.

          See The Missionary Position:Mother Teresa in Theory and Practice (1995) by Christopher Hitchens which revealed her ties to a convicted embezzler, Charles Keating, who donated over a million dollars to her Charity which she never repaid.

          Mother Teresa stated that her purpose was to bring patients closer to the god in who they already believed I.e, to pray to their Hindu or Buddhist idols.

          See: Mother Teresa Interview with a Catholic nun, “Sister” Ann of 11/23/84 at Pashupati Temple. She showed here she was both a Pantheist and a Universalist.

          • mikidiki

            Continued —
            She participated in the United Nations “Spirit of Peace” conference (1985) and the “Summit for Peace” in Assisi in Italy in November 1986.

            Study: What About The Orthodoxy Of Mother Teresa by Marian T. Horvat (10/18/2003) and
            Open Letter To Pope Benedict XVI by Mark Zina:
            Evidence Of Error In Mother Teresa’s Life, She Cannot Be A Saint of 10/21/2008, both at
            http://www.traditioninaction.com
            Finally look at Related Topics of Interest listed underneath the Mark Zina article.

            You need to temper your comments, and no, I have no personal enmity to Mother Teresa, who was far from being a saintly Catholic (until her publicised death bed confession!)

            • Objectivetruth

              No….you are nothing more than an anti Catholic troll, here to attack the Church.

              • mikidiki

                You have not read the articles I indicated and have resorted to personal abuse. You are an objectionable person, worthy only to be ignored.

                • Objectivetruth

                  I’m sorry when I confront your lies and conscious attempt to slander a saint with the truth that you are offended.

                  • Thomas

                    We appreciate your defense of St. Teresa, and your work with her organization gives you full credibility.

                    • Objectivetruth

                      Thank you. We must always be prepared to defend our faith, with truth. Mikidiki is an atheist that has posted on Crisis before. He/she will use deceptive tactics and misinformation to attack the Church, trying to come across as credible. We must respond firmly and directly with the truth.

                    • Thomas

                      Your library of factual information, coming from your devotion to the Church, the poor, and your work in the field makes a huge difference. For these things, I thank you!

                    • Objectivetruth

                      Every Missionary of Charity sister in their own way is a living saint. Part of the attraction for volunteers like myself is the opportunity to be around such Christ like examples. They truly walk in Christ’s footsteps, with great joy. To be around them you can only become a better Catholic. And they loving care for the absolute bottom and rejected in our society. People that literarly have no where else to go, rejected by their families and society. Prostitutes with AIDS, drug addicts that literarily were sleeping in alley ways the night before. And the sisters lovingly bring them in and care for them. And the greatest benefit these discarded receive is love. Love from women religious that are in love with Christ.

                      If there is one of the Missionaries of Charity homes near you, I highly Reccomend knocking on their door and seeing if they need any help (they always find something for volunteers to do!) you will be graced and blessed by authentic orthodox Catholicism, women who follow Christ with great joy!

                    • Thomas

                      I will look for their order here in southern Calif.

                      Last night, I was reading Chesterton’s take on the Jesus of the Gospels and the Jesus of the Church in The Everlasting Man. He does a great job of defining the difference between a Gospel interpretation of Jesus as a nice, meek person contrasted by the Jesus of the Church who, at times seems less compassionate in giving us impossible rules to live by. What some people struggle to realize is that an individual can be highly “rule based” as a Catholic but still be a compassionate servant. I struggled with that dichotomy and tried going over to that other side, but couldn’t do it because it often meant denying Church teaching.

                      My respect for you increased greatly reading of your service to others. It is people like you who have earned the right to inform people of these hard truths that Jesus told us to follow.

                      I need to do the same.

                    • Objectivetruth

                      I remember 20 years ago reading the directness of what Christ tells us in Matthew 25. Here I was, living a very comfortable lifestyle, and that passage from the gospel of Matthew hit me right between the eyes. Here I was a Catholic, and what was I doing for Christ’s poor? At the time, not much. I remember reading one of Mother Teresa’s quotes where she said we must look for Jesus in “the distressing disguise of the poor.” I got up the courage to go and knock on the MC’s door. They welcomed me with smiles. And all I can say is 18 years later outside of my wife and children, helping the MC’s is the greatest grace I’ve ever received. One of the best graces I’ve received is it helped break me out of my own self centeredness and greed. I have recognized and become thankful for the great blessings God has given me, and I must share these blessings.

                • Objectivetruth

                  Why do you hate the Catholic Church so vehemently?

            • Baldwin04

              mikidiki is no more than another peter hitchens clone. I believe PH served as the devil’s advocate in the cause of her beatification. All of this was thoroughly checked and disproved. Go away dude, it is really tiresome.

          • Objectivetruth

            “Her private correspondence published in 2003 exposed her crisis of Faith during the last fifty years of her life.”

            Incorrect. Mother Teresa upon her request from Christ to work with “the poorest of the poor”, had so loved Christ she asked to share in His suffering on the cross. Christ graced her with the abandonment that He had felt, on His way to Calvary. Mother considered this a great gift, and continued for the next 50 years loving and adoring Christ, and doing His great work amongst the poorest.

            “See The Missionary Position:Mother Teresa in Theory and Practice (1995) by Christopher Hitchens which revealed her ties to a convicted embezzler, Charles Keating, who donated over a million dollars to her Charity which she never repaid.”

            Let’s start with Christopher Hitchens an avowed atheist and anti Catholic. After leaving prison, Karl Keating in an attempt to do penance for his sins donated $1 million to Mother Teresa and her work. Mother Teresa had no idea who Karl Keating. She was thankful for the gift which I know from first hand experience went to help her AIDS homes in Chester, Pa, the Bronx

            • mikidiki

              Since I did not know her personally, as apparently you did, we will agree to differ. Read part two of my response. It is pointless discussing with you. Bye bye.

              • Objectivetruth

                I have been a Lay volunteer with the Missionaries of Charity for 18 years. Yes, I do have first hand, intimate knowledge.

                You’re right. It is pointless discussing with you.

                Think about the slander and lies you have vomited here. Is this the type of life you want to lead?

            • Objectivetruth

              (Cont.) NY, Asbury park, NJ, etc. and what is your point? People with money and means for millennia who have sinned have been donating money to the poor in an effort to follow Christ’s teachings in Matthew 25 and repent.
              “Mother Teresa stated that her purpose was to bring patients closer to the god in who they already believed I.e, to pray to their Hindu or Buddhist idols.”

              Once again….what is your point?? Mother Teresa LIVED the Gospel, many, many Hindu’s and Muslims were attracted to Catholicism by her sheer example of Christ.

              From what I recall from your other postings, you are an avowed atheist, correct? I’ve seen you attack the Catholic Church much on Crisis Magazine, which shows who you are.

              Therefore,,you are nothing more than an anti Catholic troll here to once again attack the Church and one of its greatest saints.

          • Objectivetruth

            You need to Google to find lies and falsities in an attempt to slander a great saint because of some hardness in your heart. I can speak from 18 years of first hand experience with Mother Teresa’s MC nuns to know you are lying.

            The great beauty of Mother Teresa though is she would smile at you and say “I forgive you, and will pray for you!”

          • DE-173

            Christopher Hitchens was a dedicated atheist with a well known disaffection for Christianity, hardly the sort of witness one would accept without extensive cross-examination.

            • mikidiki

              His atheism is well known. His desire for factual comment equally so. He is not the only source I quoted. Read the other articles.
              Why would a Catholic encourage people of other faiths to pray on their death beds to their own god(s)? She was a Humanist and an Indifferentist and not an evangelising Catholic. Her good works were not for the glory of God but Humanity, she stated this herself.

              • Objectivetruth

                Oh, boy……goodness…..

                Will you take it from someone with first hand knowledge that you are extremely, extremely EXTREMELY misinformed???

                Trust me when I say, that under the definition of “orthodox Catholic” in the dictionary, Mother Teresa’s picture is there?

              • Objectivetruth

                “Why would a Catholic encourage people of other faiths to pray on their death beds to their own god(s)”

                I have been around many dieing patients at the Missionary of Charity homes. The vast majority of them are not Catholic. The nuns will go on what’s called a “death watch” in the final days of the patients illness. They will sleep on a pad on the floor next to the patient to attend to their needs, quietly praying their rosary. The sisters never, ever force a patient of another faith to convert to Catholicism. By the sister’s holy example, many patients do ask to be baptized and receive the sacraments of the Church,on their own free will. If a dieing Muslim in the home requests an Iman by their bedside in their final days, the sisters will go to a Mosque and ask one to come to the home. The Sisters will quietly pray in front of the Eucharist in the chapel for that patient. The MC’s have never turned down a sick, homeless patient, regardless of their faith.

                Trust me

                • Objectivetruth

                  (Cont) when I say Mother was an extremely orthodox Catholic. You are extremely misinformed.

          • gsk

            Donations are donations, no need to repay

            Her “darkness” concerning faith is well-known to Catholics, who understand such crises. The bottom line is that she persevered as a bride of Christ, and practiced in an orthodox fashion. Perhaps she felt that such an example was enough, since obviously it motivated many to follow. The Hindus and Buddhists didn’t seem to do much for the slum-dwellers.

            • mikidiki

              The money was proceeds from a Savings and Loans Swindle. She was informed of this by letter and asked to repay. She ignored that request and continued to vouch for the criminal’s character after his conviction.
              You have not read my continuation post listing her heretical actions.
              No-one is arguing that she did not ease the sufferings of the poor; I am showing her unorthodoxy. END

              • Objectivetruth

                You are wrong.

                Your “heretical actions” claims are false and you are slandering a Catholic saint.

                Why, I don’t know.

                END

                • The Truth

                  I’ve been told not to argue with the devil, you’ll never “win.” Just move along. You can only try to enlighten someone for so long. Even the Bible tells the disciple’s to stamp the dust off of their sandals and move along to next town if they reject their teaching’s.

          • cestusdei

            Apparently you have never read Dark Night of the Soul. You don’t know much about Mother Teresa either.

      • Bill

        Your accusations have been refuted. Some people want to hate others that are saints, because they do not believe there can be saints.

  • Thomas

    I swear I promised myself this morning not to post anything. I will soon work on this Crisis addiction that has afflicted me.

    Fulton J. Sheen once said that there was only one religion where the leader said he was God, and who proved it. Jesus Christ was not a mere prophet. In this regard, Christianity must trump all other religions.

    Case closed.

    • Erika Allen

      Right? I am floored this is even an issue!

      • The Truth

        An issue?!?!?!!?!? Do you have any idea how many “Catholics” think all “religions” are the same?!?!??! CRISIS doesn’t begin to describe the situation. There’s more “protestant” Catholics in the Church than actual Catholics.

        • Erika Allen

          I’m not sure what to make of your comment. The tone is hard to read from the…excitable punctuation. Indeed I am aware of this phenomenon. Being a follower of the traditional rite and a member of the wildly despised SSPX, the idea there is a crisis in the Catholic Church is something central to my beliefs.

  • WRBaker

    As I would teach my students….600 years after Jesus died, this illiterate guy comes along and says, in essence, God changed his mind – Jesus was a good guy, but that’s all, Jews and Christians are lower than us, women are inferior, etc, etc.
    Students want the main, salient point – this is it.

    • DE-173

      Should I point out it is reported that the founder of that cult took a nine year old “bride”- at the age of 51?

      • Thomas

        Didn’t know that. Too bad nobody ever wrote a book called “The Last Temptation of Mohammed.” The act is a perversion, and thus the religion is a perversion.

        • Fred

          In some fairness, many marriages were arranged for power and had nothing to do with love or honor – in fact they still do. I’ve read and it’s not clear to me if this was one of those facades or just plain perverse. I can almost accept that it was stictly an arranged union for power so I don’t dewll on it. What I can’t accept is the stupidity of accepting aborgation “know ye not that God is able to do all things”, like changing his mind on any number of important things. Obviously this man was at peace in Mecca but when rejected by the tribal leaders turned to rage and vengence in Medina, how human a quality is that.
          I thought Vinnie’s perpsective above was on point about how many of us approach our own faith, and contrarily.

          • DE-173

            In some fairness, many marriages were arranged for power and had nothing to do with love or honor

            A nine year old is a child. I don’t regard little girls as marriageable or something to be exchanged to secure an office (her father was the first Caliph).

            • Fred

              All that you say is true, and I find the acts perverse (marriage and the others) as well. Probably didn’t express it as clearly as I could have, but was trying to make the point that the mans whole life was a contradiction and later violent, and the whole concept of accepting aborgation blows me away more than anything else. How anybody could follow someone who says oh yeah, by the way God changed his mind about those things he told me before and what I tell you now which contradicts what I told you before is the real truth is beyond me.

              • DE-173

                OK

              • TruthWFree

                What is more amazing is that his followers believed that…and still do. Or was it the lure of plunder, killing, and sex slave taken by your right hand?

          • gsk

            The marriage was no facade: contracted when she was six, consummated when she was nine — establishing another toxic tradition that continues to this day. That bride, Aisha, spoke quite openly about her life with M. including the physical abuse she endured. All sanctioned by God, she believed, because M. told her so.

          • Don Campbell

            Well, if you want to excuse Muhammad’s marriage to a 9-year old girl, what do you have to say to the fact that he personally ordered murders, assassinations, executions and torture? Or that he took captured women as his personal sex slaves? [He even had hot coals heaped on the chest of a captured enemy, in order to get him to give up the location of a defeated town’s riches, then defiled the man’s wife on the same day. Or that he personally supervised the execution of an entire town of Jewish men and boys (estimated at 800). Or that he demanded a large share of the booty captured by his soldiers in battle for his personal enrichment? Or that God personally authorized him to take his adopted son’s wife for his own? All of this is from the official biographies of Muhammad. And he is supposedly the “perfect man” whom all Muslim men are supposed to emulate.

        • 1Indioviejo1

          Mohamet married Aisha when she was 6 years old and “consumated” the marriage when she was but 9 years old. It is proudly proclaimed in the Hadith and the Sira.

  • CadaveraVeroInnumero

    The article’s basic question can be answered by looking at Islam’s origins. The genesis of a thing is the taproot that nourishes that thing. Odd thing is, we Westerners, desperately (to near panic) seek out the Islam’s “development” from its dogmas born from its genesis. We so much want Islam not to be what it was (or, should that be “is”).

    Intuitively, we are suspicious of Islam’s origins: that it is the mother & father of all the islamic badness that tramps across out newspapers and screens. Therefore, we place our fervent hope in Islam’s radical disobedience to its heritage, its rebellion against its parentage – to what brought it up in hand.

    Odder still, the more traditional the religious Westerner is, the more he clings to this fervent hope that Islam has “developed” far and away from its origins – especially popes, it seems. The genesis of Islam *is* what we fear it to be, what we know it to be. That Westerner clings to the falsified promise that Islam has (is the verge of, maybe) of rethinking Muhammad, of rethinking the Koran, and of rethinking Allah, himself. The orthodox, religious Westerner never asks that of his religion, but he certainly does of Islam – for the alternative, that Islam has NOT developed beyond its historic genesis of Muhammad, of the Koran, and of Allah, is a frightful one; that at day’s end, before the cock crows its strut at first light, Moderate Islam in which we had placed our fervent trust (Islam of the pretty Koranic verses) will heed the call of its genesis and return – will drink deeply from its historic taproot and come back raiding. We told Islam we had awarded Allah with God’s Simplicity – with all God’s attributes; but drunk with the bile of its taproot we will only hear its snarl, “Allah is not Simple, he is the Totalitarian Oneness. All that is not Allah is the enemy of Allah”.

    The orthodox religious Westerner so much wants Islam NOT to be historic, and NOT to be orthodox. That Westerner does not – if he is honest – permits Islam to take its food and drink from its historic taproot. In short, the religious Westerner ask of Islam to be so severed from its genesis that it ceases to be a religion. For it is Islam’s genesis which – at 3 AM – startles our sleep and snuggles fear between our sheets

    Odd, isn’t it?

    [Islam is the leftovers of the great Christological Controversies of the 5th & 6th Centuries. Which only points to the fundamental one about the nature of God. Allah is the 800 Ib elephant lounging in the interfaith conference halls: his nature (such as Islam permits the notion), his character, his attributes. Is Islam willing to put Allah on the dialogue table? Let us have a good look over, a decent chat about him. Until we are willing to come to terms with that there is no resolution - especially to the violence integral to Islam's theology.]

    • gsk

      Primarily, the debate over voluntarism. William of Ockham, call your office.

    • DE-173

      “Moderate Islam” is Islam how the xenophiles see it, a product of their imagination with no basis in fact.

      I see it as kidnapping schoolgirls (looks like we forgot that), homicide bombers detonating themselves on buses and at weddings, and airplanes being used as missiles on a warm September day.

  • Ruth Rocker

    If Islam was actually a religion, the argument that people of faith need to stick together might work. But it is not a religion. It is a political ideology disguised/advertised as a religion to gain acceptance. Because while it’s okay to criticize governments it’s terribly bad form right now to criticize religions – any religion. The fact that their stated goal is world domination should be a clue!!

    • http://www.racalvinist.blogspot.com/ Kevin V.

      Actually I think you have this backwards. What we need to start acknowledging is that political ideologies are religions.
      Nazism = religion; marxism=religion; liberalism=religion, &c. Due to the moves in philosophy over the last 1000 years or so there has been an invalid distinction made between the two.
      See the work of Eric Voegelin or John Milbank, you’ll see what I’m talking about.

  • Don Campbell

    Islam is evil for many reasons, not least of which is the fact that it’s “prophet” was a profoundly evil man. He was a warlord who raided commercial caravans and commanded dozens of battles. He demanded large a share of all booty captured by his soldiers from their hapless victims for his personal enrichment. He owned and traded slaves. He took captured women as his sex slaves. He ordered assasinations, murders and executions. He ordered torture (e.g., the heaping of hot coals on the chest of an enemy, after which he defiled the man’s wife). He personally supervised the slaughter of an entire town of Jewish boys and men (estimated at 800) by beheading. He “married” a 9-year old girl. All of this is confirmed in the official biographies of Muhammad. Yet, Muhammad is considered the “perfect man” whom all Muslim men are to emulate.

  • Aldo Elmnight

    If a Catholic defends Mohamedism or holds any opinion other than Islam is a fasle religion then he should go to confession. If any Catholic does not desire every member of Mohamedism to convert to the Catholic Church then he should got to confession.
    Islam is a religion from Satan.

  • Thomas

    A gift to the community:

    http://www.bishopsheen.excerptsofinri.com/

    Look for MP3, “Revealed Truth.”

  • http://Itsnothardtofindme.com Qari

    Islam is a violent religion, but the rise in terrorism has a lot more to do with foreign interference than it does with religion. Catholic “terrorism” also existed. Guy Fawkes and the IRA come to mind.

    • Kevin McCormick

      Foreign interference may have been the pretext for some of the Islamic violence, but if your theology says that those of your religion are destined to rule the entire earth then it is hardly a peripheral motivator. The comparison to the IRA is weak. An isolated, localized reaction to an oppressive government is not remotely the same as a theology that urges believers to kill non-believers. And I don’t think the average IRA terrorist would have been your typical daily communicant.

      • Art Deco

        The comparison to the IRA is weak. An isolated, localized reaction to an oppressive government

        Let’s spend 30 years blowing the legs of grannies because we didn’t get enough council housing and car parks and the Orangemen in the police force are rude.

        • Kevin McCormick

          And how, exactly, is that violence motivated by belief in Jesus Christ and his Church?

          • Art Deco

            It is not. I’m telling you there’s a difference between abrasion and oppression (and, while we are at it, the political goals of the IRA were asinine).

            • Kevin McCormick

              I’m pretty certain that those Catholics in Northern Ireland would consider the actions of both the militant Ulsters and the British govt oppression. Particularly if you look at Britain’s treatment of the Irish in the 18th and 19th Century.

              But however you view it, my main point is that the IRA are not representative of the orthodox Catholic faith in the way the Islamists are representative of the orthodox Islamic faith. Not even close.

              • Art Deco

                I’m pretty certain that those Catholics in Northern Ireland would
                consider the actions of both the militant Ulsters and the British govt
                oppression.

                And they’d be wrong. Doesn’t make much sense to form an organization of bomb-throwing blockheads in 1968 in response to troublesome land tenures in effect 130 years earlier.

                But however you view it, my main point is that the IRA are not
                representative of the orthodox Catholic faith in the way the Islamists
                are representative of the orthodox Islamic faith. Not even close.

                True. Confessional distinctions demarcate communal loyalties, but the content of the confession does not drive the conflict or its methods.

      • http://Itsnothardtofindme.com Qari

        Neither are these regular terrorists considered ok by most Muslims, but because they wield weapons people put up with them because they don’t want to be shot.

        It’s not weak in the least. Any terrorist organization in history can be linked pretty easily to political motivation. South Africa? Racial oppression. Lincoln assassination? The invasion of the North into the South. Why is Islamic terrorism any different? People forget not even 80 years ago Islamic countries were looking to the West with awe and appreciation. Since then we’ve displaced Palestinians from their homeland; turned the middle east into colonial territories; attempted to overthrow rulers in every middle eastern country with maybe the exception of the city states in the south; we’ve invaded Afghanistan after supporting terrorists in the 80′s who ruled the people like tyrants; we’ve supported the Saudi family in their holy land; we’ve built bases in their holy land; and the list could go on forever. No one ever hears about terrorists from Kazakhstan in the US because we never interfered in their country. Islam is a violent religion but the terrorism we see today has a lot more to do with us.

        • Kevin McCormick

          Violent Islamic fundamentalism may have had a re-awakening recently but it was certainly a part of the founding of the religion and is without a doubt included in its foundational texts. The violence has waxed and waned over the centuries but it cannot be denied that Muhammad personally used violence to spread his new religion. The contemporary Muslim may no longer espouse to his writings, but it’s hardly possible to divorce the faith itself from such forceful statements as are found in the Qur’an. If you look around the world, the vast majority of locations of violence are in Muslim-dominant territories.

          Whatever the IRA has stood for, it has not been about orthodoxy to their faith–which is the main motivating factor of the Islamic fundamentalists.

          • http://Itsnothardtofindme.com Qari

            I agree Islam is a violent religion. I granted you that. I am pointing out that the terrorism we see today is not caused by Islam per se. There is a host of central asian countries which are muslim and have not become home to terrorists. They’ve been granted self-rule without interference. Everyplace where terrorists do come from, some country has been meddling.

            But yes, Islam’s religion has a great deal of violence written into the text. I’m an Arab Christian, so I have a bit of an idea what I’m talking about here. Most muslim violence today would be between muslims if it wasn’t for stronger nations meddling in the affairs of muslim people.

            • richado

              Meddling? In many European cities today there are ‘no-go’ zones established by Muslims and enforced against non-Muslims. Also there is the aspect of creeping Sharia in the West-see London’s east end. And so on. The point is the meddling by Muslims- or I should the blatant aggressiveness- is the reality. Now and throughout history. Were they not the stronger nation for the longest time? Who started the conquest and enslavement of peoples in the Near East and Europe but Mohammad and his Muslim armies in the seventh century? Such is the nature of Islam- conquest and forcible submission of those under its sword. This has been going on since day one of Islam.
              Your accusation that ‘stronger nations meddling in the affairs of muslim people’ as a cause is baseless- the facts of history and the nature of Islam prove otherwise. As a Arab Christian why don’t you know this? My ancestors were hunted for slaves by Muslims so I too know what I am talking about.

              • http://Itsnothardtofindme.com Qari

                Europeans allowed Muslim immigration because they were not producing enough children. Britian imported muslim workers during WWII to fight the war against Germany because they were undermanned in the factories. The birthrate for Europeans is abysmal. If Europeans weren’t contracepting and aborting there would be no immigration issue. However, as it stands, that is the current cause of the Muslim invasion. The US has immigrants from Mexico for the same reason. By European standards our 1.6 children per Caucasian couple is high.

                The west has interfered in arab countries since the 19th century. But interference in the past doesn’t justify wrong action in the present. The 4 largest countries in the arab world had tyrants which were propped up and supported by the West. Osama cited the military base in Saudi Arabia as the reason for his attack since it is on holy land according to him. Why does anyone need a base there? Oddly enough there are very few Iranian terrorists even though threats of nuking them are not infrequent from the US congress. Why? What is different about Iran? There are 0 military bases there and the people were left to rule themselves after British and US interference in their politics. Yes Muslims are violent because of their religion, but anti-western terrorism would nearly cease if they were left alone. The terrorists constantly cite grievances that no one in the West wants to hear but they would be so easy to address by simply not being involved in their affairs.

                • richado

                  You do not know anything about WWII, judging by your statement:”Britian imported muslim workers during WWII to fight the war against Germany because they were undermanned in the factories” There was no Muslim migration to Britain.How could there have been? Britain was surrounded by U-boats

                  and was being bombed. Women took over in the factories for front line war production. This is well documented.Your statement is confusing and inaccurate. Not true. Baseless statement on your part. Muslims did fight as colonial troops in WWII for UK and France. And Muslims also fought for the Nazis such as the Bosnian SS Battalions in Yugoslavia, wreaking murder and havoc among Serbs and Jews. The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem visited Hitler and supported his final solution against the Jews in 1943, I believe. Hitler was an admirer of Islam. Documented.

                  Muslim immigration started post-WWII to fill manual labor jobs during Britain’s economic boom in the 50s. Remember men died during WW II.Massive Muslim immigration didn’t start until the late 70s and has continued until today. Thanks to left liberal multicultural policies- not just for a declining birthrate among the British population. Now many Muslims come for the generous welfare, and no other reason. They can do this because relatives have come before and they can be sponsored.

                  In the 19th century Europe, especially Britain with its Royal Navy, was involved in the Mediterranean and Africa in order to stamp out Muslim piracy and slave trade of Europeans and Africans. The Muslim slave trade- interference since the first days of Islam. Muslim Arabs and then Ottoman Turks to put it simply were involved in constant war with Europe to conquer it.

                  Europe did not start the conflict and interference, as you call it.. It was Islam that attacked Europe and sent it into the so-called Dark Ages of the 8th to 10th century. See the book : “Mohammed & Charlemagne Revisited-The History of a Controversy” by Emmet Scott.

                  Tyrants supported by the West? Well, some of these tyrants/dictators- because that is all the Middle East had as democracy was foreign to the region- did protect Christians, did they not? Assad in Syria has protected them until the rebel jihadists started to assert their violent claims in the name of Islam and started to murder and persecute Christians. And Obama and his administration support these Christian killing jihadists, not only here but in Libya and Egypt- Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood comes to mind. The US and its left lib agenda has been instrumental in aiding, abetting, and ignoring the persecution and killing of Christians.
                  So my question to you: Why is the number of Middle Eastern Christians rapidly declining? Who is responsible? Europeans? Don’t think so.

                  As for Iran, back in the the 70s President Jimmy Carter abandoned support of the Shah, abandoning Iran to the Ayatollah Khomeini. Thousands and thousands were executed in the name of this Ayatollah. How is this interference? Iran now funds many terrorist groups in case you haven’t noticed. Oil money.

                  Your assumption is that Europeans are somehow responsible for the Islamic problem. You play the blame game and cry victim. All emotional,ignoring all historical evidence, analysis, and the nature of Islam.
                  All cultures are not the same. All cultures are not of equal value. Some cultures can co-exist. Others cannot.

                  Islam is making inroads in the Islamization of Europe aided and abetted by an elite of EUcrats and their cultural Marxism,moral relativism, pro-death agenda- why? Because they hate Western Christendom, just like Islam does.
                  The door opens both ways. Muslims have interfered, as you put it, since the beginning. Christian Europe has a right to defend itself- from Islam and EUcrats. Anti-Western terrorism will never cease – you are dreaming. Don’t forget the money ultimately comes from oil producing Saudi Arabia with its aggressive building of mosques in Europe and North America. Interference or what. And the grievances of the terrorists are what? Nothing short of the demand for the implementation of Shariah.

                  Also why are churches and Christians in the Middle East not let alone? How are these Christians responsible? Why because they are Christian. These same Muslim terrorists are hell bent on the ultimate destruction and elimination of all Christians in the Near and Middle East. And the Europeans are to be blamed? Not likely. They are to be blamed for not protecting these Christians.
                  Muslims, judging by the evidence, have involved themselves in the affairs of Europe from the beginning. No doubt. The doors swings both ways- maybe the Muslims should leave Europe and the West alone. But that will never happen.

      • richado

        As I was told a cleric I knew back in the 80s, membership in the IRA was automatic excommunication. This needs to be confirmed.

  • http://www.commieblaster.com/ Paul Ben

    FEAR.

    This is the key word.

    Islam scares the hell out of anyone who dares opposing it or even hinting the slightest criticism. And the Christians know it, especially those living in Islamic countries, the Christians of the Middle-East.

    The Vatican is playing politics with the Muslims out of fear and out of protecting the Christians of the Middle East who always DEMANDED from the Vatican to play (pretend to be) “nice” to the Muslims.

    There are Christian lands, Churches and population that can be wiped out if the Muslims turn against them if the Vatican take a hostile attitude toward Islam (i.e. telling the TRUTH, that Islam if a LIE, a Satanic Cult).

    The Vatican and the Christians of the Middle-East are willing to change the teachings of the Catholic Church, i.e. to LIE (in Vatican II and the Catechism) to please the Muslims and to “include” them in the “Abrahamic” faith as if they are sharing the “same god,” for example.

    • mollysdad

      This suggests that it is necessary for Christians to support Israel and Zionism and to ally with the Jews against their common enemy.

      • http://www.commieblaster.com/ Paul Ben

        I didn’t suggest and I didn’t have any intention to suggest anything. I meant what I wrote and that’s all.

        • mollysdad

          Had you suggested it, I would have agreed with it.

  • ConofChi

    Highly recommend reading for Bishops. Some ( if not many) have little or no understanding of Islam!

  • The Truth

    Let’s see, Jesus Christ, the SON of God was sent by GOD the Father to save us from our sin. He was and is the WORD of God. He was crucified, died and was buried. On the third day he arose from the dead. He freed us from sin and eternal damnation, if so choose. If Isalm does not teach this then it is not the truth. How can the truth be equal to a falsehood?

  • John O’Neill

    No, no and no ad infinitum.

  • Paul

    There are no doubt many conflicting ideas in the Q’uran which can be used to inflict violence on society, but the same can be found in the Old Testament (e.g Leviticus 20: 9-16). We must not forget, central to the foundation of our Faith is the New Testament, that Jesus teaches us to “love thy enemies” (Matthew 5: 43-48) and above all we need to forgive those who trespass against us.

  • cpsho

    If catholics want muslims to be saved, they have to pray for them, fast for them and evangelize them.
    .
    “Most Sweet Jesus:
    Be Thou King of all those who are still involved in the DARKNESS of IDOLATRY or of ISLAMISM, and refuse not to draw them into the light and kingdom of God.”
    culled from: Prayer of Consecration of the whole world to the Sacred Heart of Jesus (composed in 1899 by Leo XIII)
    http://popeleo13.com/pope/prayers/

    • mollysdad

      Indeed. But Muslims who respond to the grace of God and convert to Christianity are likely to be killed by Muslims who don’t. In that case, Christians should advocate the execution of Muslims who commit murder, not only because they are murderers, but also because they pollute the earth with their idolatrous and blasphemous religion and endanger the salvation of souls with their deceptions.

  • sparrowhawk58

    Sometimes it is morally necessary to defend Muslims (usually from other Muslims), but it is never prudent to defend Islam.

  • http://www.racalvinist.blogspot.com/ Kevin V.

    Perhaps part of the issue is not seeing “secularism” as a religion, which of course it is. Theologians and philosophers are coming around to that and it is more common to see it characterized as such (see for example Charles Taylor and John Milbank)
    Given the history of Islam and current events, Church endorsements of Islam are completely inexplicable.
    The Middle East and Northern Africa were once Christian, until the soldiers of the “prophet” murdered and enslaved millions and forced the rest to convert. We just passed the anniversary of the fall of Constantinople to Muslim barbarians. The activities of Muslims in the Mediterranean were a significant cause of the “dark ages” in Europe… the list is endless.
    The Catholic Church is the heir to entire patrimony of the ancient, classical and medieval world, we of all peoples should know Islam is born of hell. Their “prophet” was a spokesperson for Satan and their father (the devil) is very pleased with the actions of his children when they murder and enslave everyone within reach. THAT is Islam, it’s what it has always been and older generations were far wiser when they acknowledged it and resisted it. Islam is the enemy of all that is good, true and beautiful in the world. Wherever it dominates there is misery, slavery and darkness.

  • richado

    Somewhere on this post someone – a Catholic-wrote that they were surprised by the contents and revelations of this article, and grateful. Out of frustration one can say what took you so long? For a long time many of us have tried to enlighten our fellow Catholics and Christians in our parishes to the dangers of Islam- creeping Sharia etc. They nod politely but they end the discussion by saying something along the lines of this: ” Oh yes, but I know this Muslim, or I know many Muslims and they are kind and nice, and opposed to violence. So what you say can’t be true here….” And they met so many nice Muslims at their local Muslim-Christian dialogue and “we really worship the same God, the God of Abraham…” . So, end of discussion. Because it is all about feelings.

  • Howard

    No, it is ridiculous for Christian leaders to defend Islam. It is, on the other hand, perfectly natural to defend Muslims, which is a different idea altogether, but one which is often confused with it. I think any Christian leader should be willing to admit that most Muslims are (or may be reasonably assumed to be) decent folks trying to follow God, and that it is not their fault that they have been insulated against exposure to the Gospel. It is these people whom we must love, these people whom we must sometimes defend, and these people with whom Christians can have a dialogue — but it is meaningless to say that Christianity can dialogue with Islam.

    Any good Christian leader will hate Islam as an idea that misleads people of good will. God may well extend them mercy, but as long as they remain Muslims, they worship what they know not; we worship what we know, to paraphrase John 4:22.

  • http://www.racalvinist.blogspot.com/ Kevin V.
  • QiPo

    There are two (count ‘em) Korans. One from Mecca and one from Medina. Medina abrogates Mecca because it came later. In Mecca, Mohammed was fairly subdued. In Medina he got his groove on (to the dismay and horror of everyone else). The Koran on religion only yields about 14% of how to be a Muslim. The other two books, collectively the Sunna, are made up of the Sira and the Hadith which is where the REAL trouble (and politics) come from. Those two volumes are the record of things said by Mohammed AND things done by Mohammed (86% about him) – the PERFECT books about the PERFECT man straight from their moon-god to the man himself. IF you are a good Muslim, Islam DEMANDS that you do what Mohammed did. IF you are a bad Muslim, you don’t do any or some of those things. At that point you risk being a Kafir or an Apostate. That, dear friends, is a death sentence. That is the way it works. You can ignore this message but you damn well sure cannot ignore the outcome if you should attempt to MODERATE their system in any way. As much as they hate Kafirs (us non-believers), and Apostates really reap violence from within their community (ummah). You are either IN or OUT. IN is life. Out is death. There is no possible way to reform Islam. They believe that all 3 books are PERFECT as was Mohammed. Asking them to reform the PERFECT word of their moon-god or to turn Mohammed into Sponge Bob IS IMPOSSIBLE. To do so would make APOSTATES of 1.2 Billion people! You really think that they will go for that? ROFLMAO. Good luck. I do not accept a dhimmi (Kafir caving status to Muslim overlords) status in any way, shape, or form whatsoever. Especially from the pulpit! We were not very smart at the start of WWII some say. Today there are several tons of information from which you can self-educate on this subject. Best to get up to speed in order to combat the lies (taqiyya), half-lies, and deceit of the world and our own (willfully?) government BEFORE things get much, much worse.`

  • Microaggressive

    According to the Qur’an, Allah is the “best of deceivers” (3:54; 8:30). The phrase is often translated into English as “best of planners,” “best of schemers,” or “best of plotters,” but the root word (makr) means “deception.” Hence, the following Qur’an verses should be rendered as follows:

    Qur’an 3:54—And they (the unbelievers) planned to deceive, and Allah planned to deceive (the unbelievers), and Allah is the best of deceivers.

    Qur’an 7:99—Are they then safe from Allah’s deception? No one feels safe from Allah’s deception except those that shall perish.

    Qur’an 8:30—And (remember) when the unbelievers plotted deception against you (O Muhammad), to imprison you, or kill you, or expel you. They plotted deception, but Allah also plotted deception; and Allah is the best of deceivers.

    Since the Bible declares that Satan is the father of lies (John 8:44), the question must be raised: Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God?

    answeringmuslims*com/2014/03/is-allah-best-of-deceivers*html

  • Porkys2istan

    All you people talk about islam but never study it. For centuries the imams tried to keep the Quran, Sira, Hadith, Sunnah, and Sharia secret and in ancient Arabic. Today, however, the islamic texts are accessible to anyone willing to wade through the disgusting (and boring) muck and filth of it all.

    Any sane person who reads these texts would realize that islam is the ravings of a self obsessed homicidal madman no different than any other two bit cult leader like Jim Jones, David Koresh, or Charles Manson.

    Or if you are too lazy (or already convinced) then this simple web page sums up the REAL differences between islam and Christianity:

    http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/Pages/Jesus-Muhammad.htm

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  • 1Indioviejo1

    I owe the Jesuits most of whatever I have learned. They very rarely spoke of Islam in depth, and now there is a gap of knowledge in Latin America and the world over on this enemy of mankind. This is a Catholic position with which I wrestle constantly. I have read the Koran, and to me it is a satanic screed. I blame the Church for the lack of exposure to Islamic evil, because no other institution on Earth has more first hand knowledge than the Church. I’ve spoken to several priest about this gap, and I can’t get a satisfying answer. What Mr. Kilpatrick says about the loss of credibility in Church leaders is true in my case. Unfortunately I see the celebrants of the Eucharist as mere politicians.

  • frjim

    Should the Jews have defended the Nazis?

  • absconde_me

    I think that Catholics, including the Pope,
    who try to define Islam as a peaceful religion are not facing reality. There is
    a problem with the nature of Islam itself, because the Koran teaches its people
    that their duty is to commit violence against non-Muslims. This is why there
    was a 1,000 year war waged by Islamic armies world-wide between 600 and 1700
    AD. Those Muslims who are peaceful are literally ignoring the parts of the
    Koran that call for violence against non-Muslims.

    When so-called “Christians” commit atrocities every obedient
    Christian on earth knows that those who are committing the atrocities are
    disobeying the Gospel.

    When Muslims commit atrocities, every Muslim and non-Muslim on earth who has
    read the calls to violence in the Koran knows that those who are committing the
    atrocities are obeying the Koran.

    The Koran is an engine of violence. This explains why the 2010 Pew Study shows
    that half of the Muslim people around the world believe in violent Islam. There
    are 1.6 Billion Muslims – Pew showed that 70% of these believe in Sharia, and
    65% of these numbers believe in “deadly Sharia” (e.g., stoning for
    adultery, death for Muslims who convert). So that makes 46%, or 738 Million
    Muslims who believe in deadly Sharia.

    That’s over twice the population of the USA.

  • Tim Watkins

    Genesis 16 11:12 1

    Then the LORD’s angel said to her:“You are now pregnant and shall bear a son;

    you shall name him Ishmael,*

    For the LORD has heeded your affliction.

    12 He shall be a wild ass of a man,

    his hand against everyone,

    and everyone’s hand against him;

    Alongside* all his kindred

    shall he encamp.”

    This is the muslim connection to Abraham who they claim leads to their god who is their master. There have only ever been two religions created by God, The Jews and the Catholics everything else is a man made derivation of that Truth. Don’t be mad at me, I didn’t make this up, it is in the Bible.

  • TruthWFree

    Mr. Kilpatrick, you are being PC in this article. Too many innuendos about whether the Church should reach out to Islam or not. Islam’s teachings are evil and hate filled against all unbelievers and you know that.

    Per your article….Pope Francis appears to have an even more positive attitude toward Islam. In Evangelii Gaudium, he asserted that “authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.”

    This statement by Pope Francis appears to ignore the multitude of violence the followers of Islam perpetrate throughout the world and point to Quran verses. Either Pope Francis is the apostate Pope of the end times or the most clueless Christian that has never thoroughly studied the Quran, the Hadiths and the Sira and the actions of the followers of Islam that are rooted in those books. I feel the Church has been hijacked. Add to this the Pope’s statement on atheists going to Heaven and his positions on homosexual marriage and it is VERY concerning to me the direction he is taking the Church.

    Either we take Jesus Christ at His WORD that He is the only way to the father or we do not.
    What we should be doing as a Church is praying for Muslims to come to the Light of Christ and trying to preach the Gospel to Muslims to leave their evil hateful religion which lies about Christ’s crucifixion and lies about Christ’s being the Son of God. (Death for apostasy is the glue that holds many in Islam.) Add to this the teachings of hate and violence against unbelievers are 180 degrees opposite Christ’s teachings of love and forgiveness in the Gospels. Jesus said that Satan is the father of all lies and since Muhammad claimed his allah god revealed the Quran, I have to believe the allah god of the Quran is SATAN.

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