Christianity and Islam: A Common Heritage?

Recently two prominent American bishops joined two leading Shiite Muslim scholars in Iran in issuing a statement on weapons of mass destruction. According to the statement, “Christianity and Islam cherish a common heritage that emphasizes, above all, love and respect for the life dignity, and welfare of all members of the human community.” It went on to say that “Catholicism and Shia Islam hold a common commitment to peaceful coexistence and mutual respect,” and concluded with a commitment to “our mutual intention to engage in sustained dialogue based on our shared values.”

This emphasis on the shared heritage of Christianity and Islam is fairly representative of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ stance on Islam—namely, that Islam is a sister faith with which we have a close affinity. For example, at the Muslim-Catholic National Plenary Dialogue in October of 2012, keynote speaker Fr. Tom Michel, S.J., entitled his talk “Living Our Faith Together.” Fr. Michel explained that he was uncertain whether the plenary theme was supposed to be “Living Our Faith Together” or “Living Our Faiths Together,” but he preferred the former because “we are already united.”

Meanwhile, back in the real world, Christians are being butchered by the hundreds and thousands by their “partners in faith.” As Islamic terrorism spreads across the globe, Church leaders might want to reconsider the common-ground-with-Islam policy that has been in place since Vatican II. It’s one thing to affirm the common humanity shared by Christians and Muslims; it’s another thing altogether to assert that they share a common belief system—as in “Living Our Faith Together.”

That approach is fraught with difficulties. What’s the interfaith common ground on jihad? On the equality of men and women? On amputation for theft? On the doctrine that Islam should reign supreme over all other religions? Is it wise to emphasize our “shared values” with a religion that inspires so many to maim and murder? To use an analogy, why would you want to tout your common ground with the local bully who beats his wife and intimidates his neighbors?

To ask a more basic question, why would you want to advertise your “common heritage” with a made-up religion? Even if Islam did not have a long history of depredations, in what sense does it qualify as a revealed religion—other than the fact that it claims as much for itself? Do the Catholic participants in the Muslim-Catholic dialogue believe that Muhammad actually received a revelation from God? If they don’t, then they are in danger of being involved in a pretense. Why do the claims of Islam merit so much serious consideration—let alone respect and esteem—if its founder was the perpetrator of such a massive fraud?

Despite all the fashionable talk about our shared heritage, there is no organic connection between Islam and Christianity as there is between Christianity and Judaism. Muhammad borrowed ideas and stories from the Torah and the Gospels, but the Koran can hardly be considered an outgrowth or fulfillment of either. It’s more accurate to say that Muhammad hitched a ride on the Jewish and Christian traditions. He saw them, in other words, as a vehicle for his own aspiration. And that aspiration—which jumps out from almost every page of the Koran—was to be a prophet.

Initially, Muhammad seemed content to be accepted as a prophet within the Jewish tradition, but when he was rebuffed by the Jews of Medina, it became apparent that his motivation was simply to be a prophet at any cost. Muhammad began to accuse the Jews and Christians of having distorted and falsified the revelations that were given to them, and he presented the Koran as the pristine revelation that the Jews and Christians had been guilty of distorting.

And what was the revelation? Ali Sina, the author of Understanding Muhammad, puts it this way:

What was his message? The message was that he had become a messenger and people had to believe in him…. Beyond that there is no other message. (p. 15)

Sina exaggerates, but not by much. Although the Koran also emphasizes the oneness of God, the only really new element not to be found in existing revelations is that Muhammad is a prophet—and not only that, but the “seal of the prophets.” The odd thing is that there is no prophecy in the Koran. Other than promising unbelievers that they will end up in hell, the Koran does not foretell anything of note. The prophet’s main message, repeated over and over, is precisely that he is a prophet.

Read the Koran and test this for yourself. The most frequently repeated phrases are “Believe God and His Prophet,” “Obey God and His Prophet,” and variations thereof. Sometimes the words “Messenger” and “Apostle” are substituted for “Prophet,” but they are all just different ways of saying “Muhammad.” In short the Koran never fails to remind its readers that Muhammad is a prophet.

Moreover, this prophet is on very intimate terms with the Almighty. Almost every time that Allah is mentioned in the Koran, Muhammad (under the title the “Apostle,” the “Messenger,” or the “Prophet”) is mentioned in the same breath. This too is odd. In fact, it borders on the sacrilegious. The greatest sin in Islam is the sin of “shirk”—that is, the crime of associating anyone with Allah. In order to refute the doctrine of the Trinity, the Koran emphasizes that Allah has no partners. Yet Muhammad links himself with Allah on almost every page—sometimes to the point that Allah begins to seem like a junior partner. Sina puts the matter rather starkly:

Islam is nothing but Muhammadanism. Muslims claim that they worship no one but Allah. Since Allah was only Muhammad’s alter ego, his other alias and invisible sock-puppet, in practice, it’s Muhammad whom they worship. (p. 7)

Prince Caetani, an early twentieth-century scholar of Islam, makes the same point in a slightly more elegant way:

It is thus the person of Mohammed that stands out above all in the front rank, till to God is given a secondary position in His capacity as the auxiliary of the Prophet. He is no longer the Supreme Being, for whose service everything should be sacrificed, but rather the all-powerful Being who aids the Prophet in his political mission, who facilitates his victories, consoles him in defeat, assists him in unravelling all the mundane and worldly complications of a great Empire over men, and helps him smooth over the difficulties which rise up every day as he works out these new phases of his prophetic and political career. (Cited in Ibn Warraq, Why I Am Not a Muslim, p. 88.)

In Caetani’s view, Allah becomes little more than a “deus ex machina” who supplies Muhammad with “revelations of convenience.” These were revelations that seem tailored to get Muhammad out of a jam or to resolve a dispute in his favor. Here’s a sampling:

  • After the Battle of Badr, a dispute arose over the division of spoils. Muhammad promptly received a revelation that “the spoils belong to God and the Apostle.” (8:1)
  • He received a revelation allowing him to marry his own daughter-in-law. (33:37)
  • Another revelation allowed Muhammad to marry as many wives as he desired. (33:50)
  • In another revelation, Allah freed Muhammad from his oath to one of his wives that he would stay away from his concubine, Mary (66:1-4).

After one such revelation, his young wife, Aisha, remarked: “Truly thy Lord makes haste to do thy bidding.”

After the Swiss voted in favor of banning minarets in their country, Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, the president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, chided the voters: “I wonder,” he said, “…if they have ever opened the Qur’an.” One could ask the same question of the USCCB dialoguers. Because if you do read the Koran, one thing you can’t miss is the centrality of Muhammad. In a large sense, it’s all about him. Although Muhammad was careful not to refer to himself by name (he does so only on four occasions), see how many times the “Prophet,” the “Apostle,” and the “Messenger” are mentioned. The same is true of the Sira and the Hadith—the two other main sources of Islam. They are dominated by the person of Muhammad. Or consider this directive from Reliance of the Traveller, the definitive manual of Islamic law:

Allah has favored him above all the other prophets and made him the highest of mankind, rejecting anyone’s attesting to the divine oneness by saying “There is no god but Allah,” unless they also attest to the Prophet by saying “Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.” (v 2.1)

In short, you can’t have one without the other.

Other prophets were anxious to call attention to God, Muhammad seemed more anxious to call attention to his own prophethood. The Koran seems to be constructed not so much to serve the needs of the people of God, but to serve the needs of one individual’s rather large ego. The Koran’s obsession with the status of Muhammad suggests that it is an entirely human creation devised largely for the purpose of furthering the aims and ambitions of one man. After all, if Muhammad is the true author of the Koran, the words “Obey Allah and his Prophet” can just as well be translated as “Obey Allah and Me.”

One can find many resemblances between the Koran and the Torah and a handful of similarities between the Koran and the Gospels, but one can also find compelling evidence within its pages that it is, in fact, the “invented tale” that its author takes great pains to deny. (For examples of these denials see 11:13, 12:112, 32:1-2, 34:43.)

This being the case, Catholic bishops ought to be careful that, in their eagerness to show respect for Islam, they do not go overboard on the matter of “common ground” and “shared heritage.” What is the point of affirming your unity with a belief system that largely developed out of one man’s megalomania? What does it matter if Muslims revere Jesus, if the Jesus they revere was introduced into the Koran for the purpose of denying the claims of Jesus of Nazareth while enhancing the claims of Muhammad the prophet?

Muslims refer to the Koran as the “Holy Koran.” So also do numerous Western leaders including presidents, prime ministers, and four-stars U.S. generals. Bishops, however, should be more cautious about assigning sacred status to a book of such dubious origins. If the chief purpose of dialogue is to allow clerics of different faiths to congratulate each other on their shared open-mindedness, then it helps to concentrate on the mutual heritage aspect and to avoid the obvious stumbling blocks. But “let’s pretend” is not a very sound basis on which to move both parties closer to the truth.

What currently seems like the height of enlightened sensitivity on the part of bishops may eventually look like a display of simple foolishness. And, considering how rapidly our illusions about Islam are being deflated by the march of events, “eventually” seems due to arrive well ahead of schedule.

Editor’s note: The sign in the photo above reads “Stop – Yes to ban of minarets” sponsored by the Swiss People’s Party and posted during the fall 2009 referendum over whether minarets on new mosques should be banned in Switzerland. (Photo credit: REUTERS / Arnd Wiegmann)

William Kilpatrick


William Kilpatrick taught for many years at Boston College. He is the author of several books about cultural and religious issues, including Why Johnny Can’t Tell Right From Wrong; and Christianity, Islam and Atheism: The Struggle for the Soul of the West and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Jihad. His articles have appeared in numerous publications, including Catholic World Report, National Catholic Register, Aleteia, Saint Austin Review, Investor’s Business Daily, and First Things. His work is supported in part by the Shillman Foundation. For more on his work and writings, visit his website,

  • The problem is not the USCCB, the problem is the Vatican.

    Vatican II and the CCC say that we, Catholics (or Christians) and Islam have the same God, which, of course, is a BIG LIE.

    So, if the source of teaching in the Church says that it’s honky dory with Islam and its God since he’s ours too, then the hierarchy will follow.

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      Both Muslims and Christians believe that God is the ground of being, about whom nothing positive can be said. All His attributes are expressed in purely negative terms, “uncreated, infinite, indivisible, invisible, and ineffable.” Thus, John Scotus Erigena says, ” “We do not know what God is. God Himself does not know what He is because He is not any thing. Literally God is not, because He transcends being.” Muslims believe the same.
      In what sense, then, can we say that Muslims and Christians believe in two different Gods?

      • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

        Are you serious? The God of the Judeo-Christian revelation is the Father of all humankind. Allah is a slave master. The spirit animating the Bible and the Qur’an could not be any different.

        • HigherCalling

          The great difference, I think, concerns the qualities of the Trinitarian God of Christianity versus the Unitarian God of Islam. The purely monotheistic God of Islam is a dangerous God, because such a God lacks the quality of a family — it is a God of justice alone and not a God of mercy. Chesterton’s contrast between the two is both delightful and powerful. He says of the Trinity:

          “…this triple enigma is as comforting as wine and as open as an English fireside; this thing that bewilders the intellect utterly quiets the heart.”

          The Trinitarian idea is a natural social instinct at the heart of humanity, “the image of a council at which mercy pleads as well as justice… For Western religion has always felt keenly the idea, ‘it is not well for man to be alone.'” The Trinity is where “God himself is a society,” But Unitarianism, or a pure monotheism (Islam) dangerously reduces God to “a mere awful unity” whose followers, not accidentally, are of the desert:

          “…from the dry places and the dreadful suns come the cruel children of the lonely God; the real Unitarians who with scimitar in hand have laid waste to the world. For it is not well for God to be alone.”

          • Uzoozy

            The only three in one I know is the 3 in one lub oil.

        • Michael Paterson-Seymour

          The great Dominican, JohannesTauler calls God, ““the Abyss which is unknown and has no name . . . more beloved than all that we can know”

          Bl John Henry Newman explains, “since this everlasting and unchangeable quiescence is the simplest and truest notion we can obtain of the Deity, it seems to follow, that strictly speaking, all those so-called Economies or dispensations, which display His character in action, are but condescensions to the infirmity and peculiarity of our minds, shadowy representations of realities which are incomprehensible to creatures such as ourselves, who estimate everything by the rule of association and arrangement, by the notion of a purpose and plan, object and means, parts and whole”

          • Dr. Timothy J. Williams

            Her’s an authoritative quote for you: “Deus caritas est.” (1 John 4:8)
            There is no equivalent statement, nor anything remotely expressing the same notion, in the Qur’an.

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              That would obviously fall within the kind of economical language to which Bl John Henry Newman refers.

              As he explains, “What, for instance, is the revelation of general moral laws, their infringement, their tedious victory, the endurance of the wicked, and the “winking at the times of ignorance,” but an “Economia” of greater truths untold, the best practical communication of them which our minds in their present state will admit? What are the phenomena of the external world, but a divine mode of conveying to the mind the realities of existence, individuality, and the influence of being on being, the best possible, though beguiling the imagination of most men with a harmless but unfounded belief in matter as distinct from the impressions on their senses?”

              In other words, “condescensions to the infirmity and peculiarity of our minds.”

              • Uzoozy

                You must be believing in fiction.

      • JP

        John Scotus Erigena obviously wasn’t exposed to the Gospels, as Christ said to know Christ is to know God the Father; and no one can approach God the Father except through Christ. For Christ, is God’s final Revelation of Himself to Man.

        The Muslims reject this entirely.

        • Michael Paterson-Seymour

          Considering he was an Irish teacher, theologian, philosopher, and poet, whom Charles the Bald appointed head of the Palace School in Paris in 847, I dare say he knew the gospels well enough.

          He really says no more than the Cappodocian Fathers (St Basil and the two Gregories) who affirmed God is beyond being or St Cyril of Jerusalem, when he says “”For we explain not what God is but candidly confess that we have not exact knowledge concerning Him. For in what concerns God to confess our ignorance is the best knowledge”

      • Conniption Fitz

        You shall know them by their fruit. A religion reveals the character (ikon) of its god/s by its practices and fruit.

        The fruit of Islam is the opposite of the Fruit of the Holy Spirit.

        However, do not confuse the Holy Spirit the sinful works of Roman Catholic or any other Church leaders* through the centuries which have often obscured, dishonored and blasphemed God.

        (*For example, Episcopal and Presbyterian churches which have embraced deviant dangerous sexual lifestyles and abortion)

      • Hockey

        Muslims do not believe in the Trinity. It is forbidden for them. They don’t understand how Christians believe in a “dead God” (as they call Jesus). Jesus is only a prophet to them. They do not believe in the resurrection. Muslims and Christians obviously do not believe in the same God.

        • Michael Paterson-Seymour

          Jews do not believe in the Bessed Trinity either, but it is Marcionism to say that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob did not believe in the Christian God

          • Hockey

            I said that Muslims and Christians do not believe in the same God.

      • TruthWFree

        One god, the allah god of the Quran calls for hate and killing of those who do not believe in his “final” prophet and denies the divinity and crucifixion of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The God of Abraham and the Father of Jesus (Jesus Being One with the Father) is a God of love and forgiveness….and yes, there is violence in the Old Testament but that was to give the Israelites the Promised Land and is historical, not for current times. The Gospels are for all times, a message of love and forgiveness; the Quran also is for all times, a message of hate and violence against unbelievers.

    • cpsho

      The Cathechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) 2nd Edition is one publication that needs to be thrown out of the RCC as soon as possible. It has done so much harm.

      Consider the prayer of Pope Leo for the deliverance of those enslaved by Islam:
      [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. Turn Thine eyes of mercy towards the children of the race, once Thy chosen people: of old they called down upon themselves the Blood of the Savior; may it now descend upon them a laver of redemption and of life.
      So when did Islam suddenly become a wonderful religion?

      • TruthWFree

        The Church was right on then in Leo’s time…wrong now.

    • Watosh

      I believe even the sainted JP II, among other Catholic Prelates, said that Christians, Jews and Muslims believe in the same God. How could they say that? One does not need to be theologian to understand that this is not true. It is interesting to see the number of Catholics who now echo this erroneous statement. Actually I believe, I am not certain about the details but, that the Muslims in Malaysia have objected to the Christians referring to God as Allah to the point of passing a law prohibiting Christians from referring to their God as Allah. Kind of makes one wonder if we are not in a wonderland with Alice.

      • Bridgeport Guy

        JP II once asked John the Baotist to “protect Islam”. He also kissed the Koran. Not good example for his sheep.

        • Micha Elyi

          Still spreading rumors, I see.

        • God bless you all! God bless Jordan!
          May Saint John Baptist protect Islam and all the people of Jordan, and all who partecipated in this celebration, a memorable celebration. I’m very grateful to all of you.
          Holy Father’s prayer |

          cf. my related Disqus comments where I sought to explain the Pope Saint John Paul II [the Great]’s kissing of the Qur’an.
          For this prayer, I have no explanation.

          • TruthWFree

            How can a Saint of his (Pope John Paul II) earthly stature not have the ability to discern good from evil? I think that God is the one who decides who is in Heaven (Saint) and who is not (Hell). I guess it matters not that Mother Theresa has not been declared a Saint, but if she’s not a Saint, then who would be? I pray that all my deceased relatives are Saints and pray for them if they are in Purgatory. Again God decides and Jesus said the least in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than anyone still on the earth (i.e John the Baptist). I believe the theology of Purgatory is based on the statement that nothing impure will enter Heaven but Jesus told the thief on the cross with him that “…this day you will be with me in Paradise”. Did he (the thief) have to go to Purgatory to cleanse his sin?

            • Peter denied the LORD …

              • TruthWFree

                Yes, but Peter did not lead millions astray. In fact, the Peter example helps people in their faith and non denial of the Lord. If the Pope knew about the denials of Jesus, the Son of God in the Quran, then he also denied the Lord and possibly lead many astray who now think Islam is okay, just like Francis. The fruits of the false prophet Muhammad in terms of hate and violence in the world is so blatant that any lay person should be able to see that, so what’s he doing or why?…(question relates to both Francis and JPII). Should we all become Muslims since he thinks it’s a sister faith? Not me no matter what he says. He should be preaching the Gospel to Muslims…that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Only way to the Father. I assume he believes that…doesn’t he?

                • I do not see Pope Francis in the same light as Pope St. John Paul II [the Great].
                  He should be preaching the Gospel to Muslims…that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Only way to the Father.

              • TruthWFree

                One more comment. The allah god of the Quran says that Jesus is only a prophet and never said He is the Son of God and did not die on the cross. Any one who gives credence to that either calls the Gospel writers liars or if the Gospel writers got it right as I believe, then they are calling Jesus a liar for making the statement the Gospel writers recorded, that “no one comes to the Father except through Me”, and “the Father and I are One”, and “you have seen me, “you have seen the Father”.

                • Please see all my comments in this article. In one, I have compared the two Faiths and to the readers, it should be manifestly evident that only one of them can be true if both of them claim to be the true faith.

          • TruthWFree

            One more point: the actions of Pope John Paul II and Pope Francis relative to Islam that it is a sister faith flies in the face of Jesus words that He is the only way to the Father. Combined with the allah god’s (Muhammad’s?) statements in the Quran that Jesus never said He is the son of God and that Jesus did not die on the cross and that the allah god says he has no sons would tend to make gullible unlearned Christians think that becoming Muslim and denying Jesus is no problem for one of the Pope’s followers, wouldn’t it?

            Because of the lies aginst the Gospels above, in conjunction that Jesus said in the Gospels that Satan is the father of all lies, plus the love and forgiveness teachings of Jesus compared to the hatred and violence exhorted by the allah god of the Quran, I logically conclude the allah god of the Quran is Satan. Is that logic too difficult for a Pope to discern?

            • You are inaccurate about Pope St. John Paul II [the Great] and Islam. Please see Muhammad? here:

              • TruthWFree

                We are talking about a man who has passed (John Paul II) but this (your link) is about as weak a critical discourse on Islam as one could get without embracing it. I suspect Francis would not even go this far. ” In these countries the situation of Christians is sometimes terribly disturbing. ” Disturbing? Churches are burned, Christians are shot and beheaded, Christian women are kidnapped and raped. The “fundamentalists” are in charge and they are following the Islamic religion to a “T”. He is hoping that the benign Islam will return that is not really Islam. There can be no dialogue with Islamists (true Muslims). Islam needs to be condemned and the Gospel preached to those good people in Islam so that they might leave their evil Satanic religion and turn to Jesus Christ and be saved…that is the command Christ gave us…not condone and dialogue with evil. He is leaving good people who are Muslims to be condemned by not preaching the Gospel to them.

                • Repeating, I do not see Pope Francis and Pope St. John Paul II [the Great] in the same light.
                  Having read Crossing the Threshold of Hope, you can now see why I didn’t have an explanation on the Pope’s prayer. We know that he has already explained himself to God if he needed to.

              • TruthWFree

                Is there anything similar to this put out by Pope Francis? Sure would like to see what his written statement is on important faith issues.

                • Click on my name and go to my blog. Pope Francis may be perceived there.
                  There are a lot of troubling things about this pontificate.

                  • TruthWFree

                    I clicked on your name but you have your posts blocked. I did go to your Twitter page but I’m not on Twitter…I am on Facebook. Is there a link to your blog?

      • entonces_99

        They could say that in the same sense that they say that Catholics and Mormons worship the same God (even though the Mormons are in fact polytheists).

        • TruthWFree

          Don’t want to be a Mormon but they do not have the exhortation to kill unbelievers in their text, I believe, and they appear to lead good wholesome lives after the law against polygamy.

          • entonces_99

            All true, but irrelevant to the question of whether Christians, Mormons, and/or Muslims worship the same God.

            • TruthWFree

              Saw Wafa Sultan debate a Islamic Imam and she told him “I don’t care if you worship a rock, just don’t throw them at me”. Just saying Mormons do not kill unbelievers, so why digress from Islam? As Christians, we are commanded to preach the Gospel to all people, so we should do so to those worshiping rocks or allah gods.

              • entonces_99

                The question from Watosh that I was responding to was, “I believe even the sainted JP II, among other Catholic Prelates, said
                that Christians, Jews and Muslims believe in the same God. How could [the sainted JP II, among other Catholic Prelates] say that [Christians, Jews and Muslims believe in the same God]?” The answer to that question has nothing to do with whether Muslims kill nonbelievers.

                • TruthWFree

                  The answer for me to that question is that the allah god of the Quran is supposed to be the one who delivered the Quran revelations via Gabriel to Muhammad, and real true Muslims have to believe this or they are Hypocrites. The allah god of the Quran says that Jesus never said He is the Son of God and also says that Jesus did not die on the cross and the teachings of hatred and violence in the Quran against unbelievers including the followers of Jesus is 180 degrees opposite Christ’s teachings of love and forgiveness. Add to this the fact that the allah god says he has no sons. So who is the allah god of the Quran if he is not Muhammad’s alter ego? The statements made about Jesus divinity and crucifixion are lies against the gospels written 600 years earlier. Muhammad allowed lying to deceive infidels and to further Islam. Jesus said in the Gospels (to the Jewish leadership…there were no Muslims) that Satan is the father of all lies. I conclude the allah god of the Quran, Muhammad’s god, is Satan.

    • AugustineThomas

      With Francis in charge, the problem is the Vatican and the national bishops’ conferences.
      (Perhaps they should stop persecuting the Mass that was celebrated widely the last time Catholicism actually worked.)

      • Michael Paterson-Seymour

        Perhaps, they should; so long as the norms of Universæ Ecclesiæ are observed “The faithful who ask for the celebration of the forma extraordinaria must not in any way support or belong to groups which show themselves to be against the validity or legitimacy of the Holy Mass or the Sacraments celebrated in the forma ordinaria or against the Roman Pontiff as Supreme Pastor of the Universal Church.”

        • AugustineThomas

          Can you give one good reason why the inferior Mass is pushed on people in such a hostile manner while the superior Mass is suppressed and its celebrants persecuted?
          To me, it seems quite obvious that heretics, yes even many in the hierarchy, are mortified to see what true orthodoxy looks like. They don’t want the light shined on them. It’s the same reason secularists are trying to destroy the Church as a whole: they don’t want to be reminded of their sins.

      • crossdotcurve

        Mercifully, we finally have a Pontiff who understands that smell and bells are not what is needed to follow the Gospel. Pope Francis is re-opening the stale corridors of the Vatican and letting a fresh wind in! May he have a long pontificate, and appoint many bishops whose first concern is the poor and marginalized.

        • cestusdei

          You will see no changes in doctrine. Didn’t you read Pope Benedict’s encyclical on social justice?

        • Samuel Dominguez

          Seriously? Are we still using this “fresh air (wind)” metaphor after St. John XXIII let in the “fresh air” of Vatican II and created the disaster of the last 50 years? I have in memory that photo of St. John Paul II kissing the Koran. Whatever he was canonized for I don’t think it was for that.

        • TruthWFree

          Condoning Islam is not following the Gospel….or that atheist can go to Heaven…why would they want to go to a place that does not exist anyway?..and condoning homosexual unions…that’s not following the Gospels either.

    • CadaveraVeroInnumero

      The bishops won’t change their tune until they have no funds to fly to Tehran.

      Defund the bishops. Dry them up – over this issue (and a few others). Put nothing in those envelopes or plate. Support your local parish by paying its bills directly. Establish an “offsite” foundation to support local ministries and upkeep of facilities. Volunteer.

      I live in the BANKRUPT Diocese of Stockton. Why should I give a d[i]m[e]!

      • TruthWFree

        What does your name CadaveraVerolnnumero mean? Number of Dead bodies…Verol?

  • … suggests that it is an entirely human creation …
    Worse … think diabolical inspiration …

    • Conniption Fitz

      Islam is a product Mohammed’s mind as he went from relatively stable to mentally deranged and its practices and writings replicate Mohammed’s mindset in his followers.

      Likewise, following God’s laws and commandments and Christ’s Words reveal and replicate the character and mindset of God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) in His Followers. Scripture urges this redirection, focus and transformation of mind. “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” and “Be of one mind…”

      Reading the words of the Islamic texts and watching the works of Islam, both now and over the centuries, we recognize the truth – the fruit of Islam is the opposite of the Fruit of the Holy Spirit. Islam’s works are war, murder, rape, lies, aggression, slavery, oppression. In every way, Islam contradicts and dishonors God. Islam does not honor women, God’s first gift to man, but abuses and disrespects them, calling them half-human in the Koran. Whereas, God commands honor to both father and mother in the Ten Commandments. Moses gave an inheritance to women whose father died and left them without a male provider and protector. Women are given equality and dignity in the teachings and actions of Jesus Christ.

      • The spiritual war
        […]For it is not against human enemies that we have to struggle, but against the Sovereignties and the Powers who originate the darkness in this world, the spiritual army of evil in the heavens.
        cf. my other related arguments on Disqus.

  • jacobhalo

    Correct, Paul. We don’t worship the same God because Jesus is God, and the Muslims believe he was just a prophet. Jesus said, “the only way to the father is through me.” Muslims and Jews don’t go through Jesus to get to God. Notice Jesus said, “the only way..
    He didn’t say one of the ways.

    • Uzoozy

      Men wrote the bible in Greek, Jesus spoke in Aramaic .
      No two Gospels are the same. Xtain bible is man written over14000 errors in it.
      World was 6000 yrs old, and people believe in it.

      • Bernonensis

        Let me guess: Jesuit education?

        • Micha Elyi

          My guess is the Usenet Madrassa.

    • Uzoozy

      Paul as a man wrote this line, means nothing. Jesus in the bible never said I am god pray to me.

      • Hockey

        Muslims cannot comprehend the Trinity or Resurrection. Islam is about obeying, power, and control. Christianity is about free will and faith.

      • Micha Elyi

        Jesus in the bible never said I am god pray to me.

        Nobody in Judea and Samaria required instruction to pray to God.
        And Jesus certainly did identify Himself as God. Many times. If you knew the Hebrew Scriptures, you’d recognize how He did so. If you knew the Bible, you’d know when He did so.

        • Uzoozy

          I have read a lot of the many volume of the bible. Just folklore.
          Stories of father and kids have incest, is this what would be taught to the young children, save the queen.
          Its extremely boring books.

        • Uzoozy

          I do not have to go to Judea and Samaria to know that people prayed to a man, when God himself said in the ten commandments do not PRAY to anything other than HIM.
          Moses, Abraham David, Noah all prayed to on God they were the messengers of God , so was J

  • Dick Prudlo

    Just what values does the USCCB value, quite frankly? And, while were at it, does the Vatican? Both of them are a menace to the Catholic Faith, so why wouldn’t they find the “cult of Muslix” so worthy of “dialog”

  • JP

    Islam, more than likely, was just one of a number of Christian heresies that sprang up all over North Africa and the Saudi Peninsula between the 2nd and 5th Centuries. Just a few years ago, archeologists uncovered an ancient Nestorian temple near the city of Jedd-ah. Before Mohammed over-ran the Saudi Peninsula, several Christian sects, as well as Jewish sects, and not to mention many Pagan religions had established themselves there. Mohammed would have been exposed to a variety of religions. His concoction – Islam, was just that.

    Islam, once you get past its veneer, has nothing in common with Christianity. For Christianity is the story of personal redemption through the Life, Death, and Resurrection of God’s Only Son – Christ. It is all about mercy. Islam, on the other hand, is about the Slave-Master Relationship. The Christian God endows every human being created with equal dignity. Universal Human Rights, are derived from this unique endowment. Christ died, but conquered Death. Christ Liberates the Soul; Islam enslaves it.

    • James1

      Belloc has, indeed, called Islam a heresy.

      • entonces_99

        And Dante before him.

        • Cyril

          And John Damascene before them.

    • PalaceGuard

      There is a series of posts at Catholic Answers exposing the degree to which the Koran (sorry, Google, I do not spell it Quran, despite your attempt to PC me), flat out plagiarized Old Testament, New Testament, and early Christian writings.

  • tjf

    Fantastic article. Now someone needs to send it to the Church hierarchy.

  • ClassicalTeacher

    Reminds me of a similar meeting back in the late 30’s between Chamberlain and Hitler…

  • Watosh

    Yes, the Muslim religion and the Koran strain logic. Yet the Muslim world still embraces their beliefs whereas the Western World is in the process of abandoning Christian teaching in favor of the will of the people in a secular government. It is something I wonder about. Maybe this is just evidence of the power of Satan in this world.

    • Uzoozy

      Its the power and simplicity of Islam One God many prophets all praying to God alone.

      • musicacre

        The early Muslims went to great lengths to kill off all the remaining relatives of the Prophet Mohammed. If they respected their own religion, why would they do that? Then later claim to follow him?

        • Uzoozy

          Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) did not want to appoint an successor or Caliph, unless chosen by the people, another sect known as Shia wanted Hazrat Ali to succeed , there was an immense rage and that killed all Prophet Mohammad’s decedents.
          The Shias killed Sunnis and hence the split.
          It was a very turbulent time in Islamic history.
          Not new to history, 8 popes were killed in office due to various reasons
          Not fair/ethical that what history tells us.

    • Uzoozy

      Its simple to understand, Christianity is based on false bible writing. People are not stupid. Read Islam’s holy book and be blessed .
      Islam is the worlds fastest growing religion in the world, despised unnecessarily and made into things that Islam is not.
      Why does Islam spread by itself, because of its simple message of one God.

      • Hockey

        Actually Christians outnumber Muslims by the millions. Islam is spread by the sword. Why would you choose a violent political cult that oppresses people and performs ethnic cleansing. Islam is being exposed for the fraud it is. You and other brainwashed Muslins will have to find a way to deal with this truth.

  • William you give the bishops far too much credit. They practice treating people how they the bishops wish to be treated. That violates the first commandment. They are no more God than Allah or Muhammad. When you treat people how they [not you] want to be treated, you have to dialog and engage in conversation. What if what they want violates your nature? If you are not willing to submit to their wishes then say no thank you and move on. There is virtually no history of Muhammadanism operating peacefully with others…even themselves.

  • Catholic in Exile

    Thank you Mr. Kilpatrick for your insightful, and courageous, article. In view of this era of political correctness we live in, witnessing to truth has become a dangerous endeavor. Especially, when it comes to Islam. It is most unfortunate that this cult of idolatry has enthralled not only its members, but the Church’s leaders also.

  • gsburch

    A wise man once said, “Who is going to save our Church? Don’t look to the priests, don’t look to the bishops. It’s up to you, the laity, to remind our priests to be priests, and our bishops to be bishops.” Was that attributed to Fulton Sheen…I can’t remember.

    • Uzoozy

      God looks after the churches, synagogues and Mosques, by himself or the other people of the world

      • Hockey

        Isis who claim the caliph are blowing up churches and mosques, so is boko harem. Do you support these Muslims?

  • DE-173

    Will somebody tell me what the he** is the Committee on International Justice and Peace of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, what it’s “responsibilities” are, how it’s members and chairman are selected, what governs its actions, what knowledge, experience or competencies are posessed by the individual member, because it sounds like a an unrestricted playground for pretentious pseudo-religious political activism to me.

    The Bishops should disband their bloviating committees, divest the USCCB of its wealth and distribute it to the poor and get back to the respective diocese and concentrate on butts in seats issues.

    • RufusChoate

      I am going with classic bureaucratic featherbedding for idle dolts.

      • DE-173

        Well, I look at it this way. My parish still has $1.7m of construction debt for the construction our new Church. Although we long ago exceeded the our pledge, I’m exercising my duty of prudence to help relieve the burden of that debt.

        Any request for money that has USCCB on it, will go unanswered. Instead I will dig a little deeper to ensure there’s a place for Mass, Baptisms, Weddings and Funerals. The Pope wants a poorer Church, that should start with jettisoning off the nonsense.

        • Uzoozy

          Why I am Not a Christian
          What Would Jesus Do?
          Is the Bible Fit for Worship

          Reprinted from:

          (Click here for author information.)

          Biblical/Pentateuch Intolerance:

          I see so many religionists rant and rave about how Atheists are “not tolerant of believers and have no respect for their faith”. To non believers this claim is absurd. For intolerance of various religions is the foundation of Judaism, Christianity, Muslim and many other orthodox communities. Matter of fact, the Bible and Pentateuch commands religious intolerance in MANY verses, even to the point of KILLING people for their beliefs. Here then, are a few choice verses that show just how intolerant these religionists are of other believers and nonbelievers. We shall start with the two verses that helped to inflict one of the biggest mass murders in history, the Inquisition.

          Woman with “familiar spirits” must be stoned to death. Leviticus 20:27

          “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” Exodus 22:18

          • DE-173

            Do you have anything interesting or relevant to offer?

            • Uzoozy

              There is only One God pray to Him.
              325 AD someone was made god, he was not there for ever he was a human

              • DE-173

                Your fantasies are neither interesting or relevant. Amusing, maybe.

                • Uzoozy

                  All the best , facts are facts,

                  • DE-173

                    When you stumble across one, let us know.

          • Howard Kainz

            It’s interesting that you do not quote the New Testament.

  • RufusChoate

    It is amazing that in a day and age when the history and culture produced by Islam is so easy to examine that anyone would find anything laudatory or compatible with Christianity without being willfully ignorant. It is an aggressive and intolerant tyrannical political movement masquerading as a religion to force uniformity on disparate cultures. Even at it most basic Theological level it denies both the patrimony of Abraham and the Divine nature of Christ.
    Shiites are the suicide cult of an already flawed and vile creed and have nothing in common with Catholicism.

  • Cincinnatus1775

    All heresies are deviations from the truth. Islam is one such deviation — perhaps the first. It proceeds from the truth that there is one God and immediately goes wildly astray. That there is one God and that Islam’s founder descended from Abram through Hagar (notably BEFORE God renamed him Abraham and established His covenant) are the only common heritage.

    For the bishops to assert that from that ancient sliver of commonality proceeds some great “common commitment to peaceful coexistence and mutual respect” based on “shared values” now is the height of foolishness.

    That muslims worship one God does not mean they worship the same God as Christians and Jews. They claim so, but given the belief system that attends their claim, I wonder sometimes…That said, I accept the determination of the Magisterium. However, accepting that their God and ours are the same does not mean their religion is equivalent or valid or that their definition of “peaceful coexistence” and “mutual respect” are the same as ours. In practice (and from its very origin), peaceful coexistence with muslims has meant subservience, dhimmitude and payment of jiziyah by non-muslims, and “mutual respect” has been decidedly one way.

    The bishops seem never to have heard about the islamic doctrine of taqiyya — deception. Interestingly, taqiyya was first codified by Shia muslims. Essentially, in islam it’s OK to lie — particularly to infidels. So like babes in the woods, the bishops propose a statement about peaceful coexistence and mutual respect… Meanwhile, their muslim counterparts say “sure, infidel, we’re happy to coexist peacefully once you submit to islam, — convert or accept second class status — and when you respect us in that way we’ll respect your second class status.”

    And to have the statement come out when, as the Pope has stated, there are more martyrs than at any time in history with muslims killing or driving out Christians all across the Middle East and the northern third of Africa, shows how delusional and foolish some of our bishops are.

    • Uzoozy

      Is this the truth
      Kill those who are not Christian or Jewish:

      You must kill those who worship another god. Exodus 22:20

      Kill any friends or family that worship a god that is different than your own. Deuteronomy 13:6-10

      Kill all the inhabitants of any city where you find people that worship differently than you. Deuteronomy 13:12-16

      Kill everyone who has religious views that are different than your own. Deuteronomy 17:2-7

      Kill anyone who refuses to listen to a priest. Deuteronomy 17:12-13

      Kill any false prophets. Deuteronomy 18:20

      Any city that doesn’t receive the followers of Jesus will be destroyed in a manner even more savage than that of Sodom and Gomorrah. Mark 6:11

      Jude reminds us that God destroys those who don’t believe in him. Jude 5

      • Hockey

        mohammad plagiarized all of this and wrote it in the koran for Muslims to follow. Don’t forget the book of Jonah and how the Jewish and Christian God felt about the people of Ninevah. I’m sure He is not happy with Isis and their evil ways right now.

    • musicacre

      We always have to remember what is binding and what is just an opinion, where the Pope is concerned. Think about Paul VI; he was holy and wrote an extraordinary document for posterity. (Humanae Vitae) But he was not a Liturgist, nor did he claim to be. He thought he could monitor the newly- packaged all-complete Mass that Bugnini was cooking up, merely by spending time with him every day of the process. But he did not comprehend what was transpiring until too late…..

  • publiusnj

    The jihad against the Christian Civilization of the West (the one the US has recently decided to abandon) has been going on (and sometimes off) since 632 AD, when Mohammed died and his followers burst out of Arabia and began attacking both the Persian and Byzantine Empires. Islam was in the Ascendancy in both East and West until stopped outsid3e Constnatinople and at the Battle of Tours. As a result of that first sally of 100 years or so, the Arabs conquered the Mideast up to a portion of Syria that remained Christian and the Eastern borderlands of the Persian Empire and North Africa from Egypt in the East and Morocco in the West plus the Iberian Peninsula and the South of France. In that same 100 years, the Shia Sunni split also began and that tended to slow down the jihadist spirit of Islam for awhile because they were involved in internecine warfare (also jihad) instead.

    So, Araby tended to settle in at that point, until Barbarian invasions of the Mideast led to new warrior Muslims who likewise took up jihad. That in turn led to the wars between Byzantium and Seljuk Islam that culminated in the 1071 Battle of Manzikert and the Fall of the Interior of Asia Minor and that in turn led to the Crusades. After the Fall of the last Christian state in the Mideast in 1291, Islam found itself confronting attackers from the Eastern steppes, the Ottoman Turks who conquered the Islamic Mideast and then set their now Mohammedan sights on Byzantium by renewing the assault on the Eastern Empire’s European possessions around 1330.

    The Ottomans took 120 years actually to conquer Constantinople itself but shortly thereafter renewed their attack on the European Chrstian Heartland which culminated in the loss of Hungary but then the successful defense of Vienna in 1526. At the same time, the Ottomans were trying to turn the Mediterranean into a Muslim lake and they unseated the patrolling Knights of Malta from their harbors in Rhodes and pushed back the Venetians in a series of naval wars. However, Christendom stopped them at the 1565 Siege of Malta and the 1571 Battle of Lepanto. In other Mediterranean warfare, Spanish King (Emperor) Charles I (or V) and his son, Felipe II, kept pushing on the Muslims’ strongholds in Western North Africa.

    Then the last big effort of the Muslims to control all Europe (until now) fell short with the second successful defense of Vienna in 1683. Since that date until the Mid-20th Century, Islam was on the defense in the Balkans and then throughout Norh Africa and the Mideast. With the British withdrawal from Palestine and Egypt in the 1940s-50s, though, the tide of jihad has turned. With Eisenhower’s failure to support the British-French-Israeli invasion of Suez in the Fall of 1956 (i.e., during Eisenhower’s second election campaign), the Arabs have learned we can be rolled, despite a series of brilliant military victories. And so, renewed jihad has begun.

    • RufusChoate

      I think it is also interesting to note that two or three of the Europe’s worse tyrants adopted or planned to adopt Islam as the State Religion: Napoleon, Hitler and to a much lesser degree: Emperor Fredrick II (Hohenstaufen).

    • musicacre

      They were also at each others’ throats from the beginning…literally. There are accurate accounts of one tribe inviting another to dinner and cutting off all their heads as they ate. That was in a book written by a Muslim historian, who wishes Islam could become a religion again, instead of the unabashed expansionist political movement it is now.

  • DE-173

    “Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, the president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, chided the voters: “I wonder,” he said, “…if they have ever opened the Qur’an.” ”

    I have. It reminded me of another book. One written by Shickelgruber. It’s no accident the little corporal reached out the Muslims or that the Swastika still finds refuge in lands of the Crescent.

  • Fred

    Thanks William for yet another excellent article. As a recent convert I’ve been trying to become more educated in the roots of my own faith and also about Islam because it is so dominant in our times. I try to remain objective which I know is difficult, but I came to the same conclusions as you have when I read the Quran. I have a hard time seeing how anyone in their right mind who claims to be an honest student of Islam can interpret Muhammad as anything other than a vengeful man full of hate after being spurned in Mecca, full of human failings we can all easily recognize. If it wasn’t such a serious matter in terms of murder and mayhem and numbers I’d almost say it was laughable. It’s beyond me also why nobody seems to want to recognize that more Muslims have died at the hands of other Muslims because of Sunni-Shiite hatred, amongst others. The only unifying force is their hatred for non-Muslims. I struggle trying to understand our Church’s approach and wonder whether we appease or if there is a wisdom in embrace. I know people want to believe that playing nice will make the world a better place and that stirring a hornet’s nest doesn’t usually produce positive results. At least not immediately, but at least it gets the colony out in the open instead of allowing it to grow unabated which usually only forestalls the problem and makes it worse inevitably – lie in peace until you have amassed a position of strength and then strike at the infidels. I’m inclined to side with Belloc. God bless for speaking our minds and sharing our interpretations freely, and I pray that we will not be slaughtered for it.

    • Uzoozy

      Believe it or not Serial killers are all white. Any message here

      • Hockey

        That’s easy to debunk. Muslims have killed millions. They are serial killers and ethnic cleansers like Hitler.

  • Alex

    I think one very informative approach is to try to look at the two religions from a secular, historical perspective. The one major similarity between Islam and Christianity is that they were both founded by, and based on the lives of a single person; with much of the tradition and organization being created by their respective immediate followers. The difference is the person, teachings, and disciples of each.

    In a time of near constant violence, slavery, and warfare, among an occupied people looking for a leader to throw off the yoke of their oppressors, Jesus taught forgiveness, love, and sacrifice. His was a revolutionary concept, and one that 2000 years later would be hard to find fault with, even if not a believer. Over the next few centuries, his disciples and followers largely followed in his footsteps, teaching, preaching, being persecuted, and for many, ultimately being martyred.

    In a time of near constant violence, slavery, and warfare, Mohammad was little different than any other tribal warlord, using warfare, deception, and violence to achieve his aims. Perhaps his methods of inspiration were unusual, but the ultimate ends were achieved by means typical of the times before and since. Over the next few centuries, his descendants and followers would continue to expand his empire through more violence, compulsion and aggression.

    The two could not be more dissimilar, and as a result the religions are equally dissimilar. For much of the last 1400 years the Christian world has been a target of Islamic aggression, and those in the Church should know this better than most. I find it very disheartening to hear officials of the Catholic Church ignore or downplay these differences, and the history that has resulted from them. I am not asking for fire and brimstone from the pulpit, but being dishonest with the truth of the relationship and history of these institutions is unacceptable.

  • cestusdei

    I see us having less and less in common with them. We need to convert them not play patty cake.

  • Vladimir Solovyov wrote that Islam is simply a Byzantine collection of heresies that became a new religion. The 7th century heresy of iconoclasm and monothletism combined to form the Islamic religion. The often conflicting mythologies of Muhammad were created two centuries after the Arab conquest of the 7th century in order to justify an already existing reality.

    What Christians need is to do is to revive devotion to Our Lady of Ransom and rekindle the Franciscan zeal to bring the gospel to Muslims who are living under the slavery of the Islamic God.

  • mollysdad

    The organic connection between Judaism and Christianity lies in the fact that Jesus was born a Jew and lived a Jewish life not very different from that of Orthodox Jews today. Muhammad – assuming he existed at all – was not a Jew and was never a Christian.

  • Aldo Elmnight

    ““Catholicism and Shia Islam hold a common commitment to peaceful coexistence and mutual respect,”
    I think that bishop misunderstand Catholicism. A catholic should desire that all mohamedeans be converted to the Catholic Church and the religion of mohammed be wiped from the earth. That is the only loving response.
    There is not shared heritage. Mohammedism is a collection of Catholic heresies and is from Satan.

    • JTLiuzza

      Well put, Aldo. Direct, to the point, accurate, and completely devoid of the effeminate need to accommodate error.

      • Uzoozy

        Koran is the only Holy book revealed by God. Read with open mind and gain wisdom and peace of mind.

        • Hockey

          The Truth is being revealed to you through this article and everyone’s comments. Jesus is the only way you can know God and go to heaven. You are worshipping a false god and the true God hates that. You know what happens to people who worship a false god? You have been warned. If I were you, I would stop posting false idol (allah, mohammad) comments on blogs.

    • somnipod

      Try getting a bishop to say that though. In this age oh false eccumenism

  • hombre111

    This article made me think of America’s native born religion called Mormonism. Joseph Smith also had his convenient revelations. But however unbelievable Smith’s claims, Catholics in the West have to deal with his spiritual descendents. And there is much good among Mormon people, who indeed fear God and, in their own way, honor Christ. The fruits of the Spirit are obvious in some of my relatives, who are Mormon. It is on this level that I will be with them and pray with them. I am not caving in to Joseph Smith’s claim to be God’s one true church. I think this is what the American bishops are also trying to do. Considering that there are a billion Muslems, it might be a better strategy than declaring some kind of religious war.

    • Art Deco

      it might be a better strategy than declaring some kind of religious war.

      Sorry. Someone already did that, and it wasn’t us.

      • hombre111

        Agreed, but we have to be careful.

    • cestusdei

      If Mormons were stoning people to death and flying planes into buildings I would think differently of them. They are wrong, but not a danger to others.

      • hombre111

        Agreed. Where they are alike is in their books. I still have to read the Koran to prove this to myself, but I understand that Mohammed claimed to transcribe the words of the Archangel Gabriel, while Joseph Smith claimed to transcribe words written on golden plates by North American prophets.

    • Bill Russell

      For all its lunacy, the Book of Mormon does not call for the complete destruction or subjugation of Infidels. Islam is more a total social construct than a religion, like National Socialism with all its neo-pagan pseudo-religiosity. Tolerance and compromise were considered strategic in the 1930’s vis a vis the Nazis and we saw where that led.

      • hombre111

        I agree about Islam as a total social construct, with no separation between church and state. Not sure, though, if I agree about tolerance and compromise. We are talking about a billion and half people scattered all over the world, with people living their Muslim religion in different ways. If we radicalize them by intolerance, all the moderates will disappear. That is almost always what happens in such situations. This is a huge and complicated problem.

        • bonaventure

          You’re talking about the “moderates” from the Muslim Brotherhood? Bwahaha!

    • DE-173

      “it might be a better strategy than declaring some kind of religious war.”

      Strawman there, Dorothy.

      • hombre111

        o o o o o

        • DE-173

          Five zeros is what I’d rate your commentary too.

          • hombre111

            0 0 0 0 0

            • DE-173


              • hombre111

                o o o o o

    • bonaventure

      You conveniently forget that your beloved Islamist co-religionists (hey, since we share “our” faith) hate and hang/stone your beloved “gays.”

      Such an impossible contradiction to reconcile! Man, I wouldn’t want to be in your shoes, Hombre. Twisted, twisted, twisted liberal mind.

      • hombre111

        I don’t know about liberals, but I like to see both sides of an issue. If you want to get beyond conservative simplicities and see an educated look at the complex Moslem world, go to Juan Cole’s Informed Opinion.

      • hombre111

        If you really want to understand what is going on in the Moslem world, rather than the usual conservative bladder contents, read Juan Cole’s Informed Comment about the Arab and Moslem world.

  • JRDF

    ever notice one can speak the name allah & discuss or draw an image of allah, but, try to do the same with muhammad. ‘nough said.

  • James

    What is known of Muhammad was compiled 250 years after his death. We simply do not have the wherewith all to determine that what is known about him is accurate. Even his biographer Ibn Hisham admitted that he edited information that was disgraceful or distressing.

    Compare what we know about Jesus from actual eyewitness accounts written within a generation of His resurrection.

    I am not sure it is even possible in a discussion about Muhammad that there can be any certainty of historical reality.

  • Thomas J. Hennigan

    If it were only the American Bishops who are clueless on the treal nature of Islam, that might not be too bad, but look at what Pope Francis has to say about it in Evangelii Gaudium

    “Our relationship with the followers of Islam has taken on great importance, since they are now significantly present in many traditionally Christian countries, where they can freely worship and become fully a part of society. We must never forget that they “profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, who will judge humanity on the last day”.[198] The sacred writings of Islam have retained some Christian teachings; Jesus and Mary receive profound veneration and it is admirable to see how Muslims both young and old, men and women, make time for daily prayer and faithfully take part in religious services. Many of them also have a deep conviction that their life, in its entirety, is from God and for God. They also acknowledge the need to respond to God with an ethical commitment and with mercy towards those most in need”.

    I think he is very wrong in stating that the sacred writings of Islam have retained some Chritian teachings”. Well, not in the way they are understood in Christianity. According to Islam Jesus will come back at the end of time to judge and first he will destroy all crosses, meaning that he will destroy Christianity, as Islam does not believe that Jesus died on the cross. As for Abraham, it holds that he was actually a Muslim (yes, despite having lived some 2400 years before Islam was invented). It also holds that both Moses and Jesus were Muslims and that their followers betrayed their true teaching by adulterating it. They consider the doctrine of the Incarnation “shirk”, the greatest possible sin, etc. So, the only thing in common iwth Islam is the existennce of Allah. Italso holds to stricr predestination and there is absolutely nothing in Islam about charity, but only hatred and killing of “fafir”. Then there is the theory of abrogation, so that the nice verses are cancelled by the later jihadist ones which were supposed to have been given in Medina when Mahommad was a warlord and massacred Jews and Christians.

    It is hard to understand how the Pope is so clueless about Islam when it ould be easy for him to find out as there are lenty of people in Rome who know, even in his own Jesuit order.
    Besides, there is an increasing body of scholarship wihich questions the whole Islamic narraative about Mahommad, Mecca. In fact, it has no historical basis. It is a religion cooked up to give support to a political ideology of world domination.
    Contrary to what HP says, Islam was not really one Christian heresy, but a hodpodge of elements taken from Judaism and heredox Christian sects and tailored for political purposes.

    • somnipod

      Ughh. I just thew up in my mouth.
      Imagine Pius X reading this?

      “…sacred writings of Islam. .”
      My @ss!!!

  • Bridgeport Guy

    Great article. We definitely need to realize that Islam is evil in denying Our Lord’s divinity and for many other errors. You have to admire the many great Catholics of ages past who fought so valiantly against Islam like Don Pelayo, Queen Isabella, the Lepanto heroes, Jan Sobieski, etc. We could use a few good men like these in Syria, Iraq, Nigeria and other places. But while Islam and it’s practitioners are a threat to the physical existence of so many innocents, we also need to be aware of the threat posed by our Jewish elder brothers in the faith. So many times we hear the term “Judeo-Christian” tossed around so loosely. We need to realize that the clues of the Jews often directly contradict our own. Over 90% of Jews favor abortion as a woman’s right, and Jewish men and women figure in overwhelmingly in legalizing abortion and help

    • Bridgeport Guy

      Continued…help to make the ground fertile for the widespread acceptance of it. The anti-family culture found in Hollywoid and in the music industry, both of which influence our youths very much, is promoted smdisoriportionately by Jews. If you want to cute the errors of the Koran- and rightly so – then it should also be pointed out that the Talmud is not only erroneous on many counts, but directly attacks Our Lord and Our Lady, promotes lewd acts, and provides the loophole for abortion that the Jews have taken great advantage of. The rejection of Our Lord by Jews does not mean that He ever stops calling or loving them. They are to be treated with great live and respect, but we need to realize the tremendous differences between Catholicism and Judaism, and that it would be dangerous to one’s soul to consider the Hews saved by the Old Covenant. They need Jesus to be saved, and too many of them refuse to be open to Him.

      • somnipod

        But wait. .. Jews and Muslims don’t need to convert anymore. Didn’t you hear?
        They are saved now, ever since Vatican II.

    • musicacre

      You need to distinguish between the believing Jews and Zionists (political Jews) in a a discussion like this. Then it isn’t confusing at all. Two radically different agendas.

  • somnipod

    Fantastic read!!
    And, man o man, an I sick of our Catholic “Sheppards” holding Islam up to the level of Christianity.
    Whether it’s kissing the Koran, wishing Muslims to “harvest great fruit this Ramadan”, or urging Muslims to “hold fast to their Koran” (all done by popes since Vatican II) this false eccumenism must stop. Not only is it hurting Catholic identity and causing scandal, it’s putting these poor Muslims souls in jeopardy of damnation (with the popes okay).

    Can we please go back to the reign of Christ the King? He obviously always was and will be, but can put bishops, including the one in Rome actually acknowledge his kingship over All other false religions?
    This previously condemned religious indifferentism is really really bad and must stop!

  • Jim

    Thank you Mr. Kilpatrick for telling the truth. Islam holds that Christ was, at best, a prophet but most definitely not the Son of God. It saddens (read enrages) me that Catholic bishops speak of our common heritage and shared faith with Islam. I absolutely, positively and unequivocally reject any notion that Catholicism and Islam are connected in any substantive way. Islam is a lie and Catholicism is the truth and no Bishop or even Pope can make it otherwise.

  • AugustineThomas

    Most of the Catholic bishops seem to hate orthodox Catholics above all else.

  • There is a heck of a lot more than one Islam, though for the Muwahiddun, I’d agree. Except maybe the Druze.

  • spitfire1938

    Bravo sir! Most excellent reporting! It appears to me that most of the American RCC’s hierarchy have been subsumed out of the orthodox “Traditional” Church into the church of ‘nice’! I no longer pay them any heed. And I agree, Islam is not a religion…it is, in my view, a tyrannical Political System organized to feed an unending stream of children into the voracious maw of it’s bloodthirsty, eager pedophilies! They represent “Evil” of the highest order. Unfortunately America itself is near collapse because of satan’s other masterpiece of disguise…”contraception”! Fifty seven Million Citizens are not here, but they have not been silenced!

  • I think God allowed Islam to exist because he gave Man the freedom to LIE.

    On the other hand, I think Islam proves the existence of Evil and therefore the existence of God.

    Because if Evil exists, it has been allowed to exist.

    And since Evil must be defeated because Evil never lasts, only Good can defeat Evil.

    And that Good is GOD.

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  • Bill Russell

    The helpless and increasingly floundering Cardinal Dolan, transplanted from the Midwest to New York of which he knows depressingly little, visited a mosque on Staten Island exactly one year ago. He told the Muslims:

    “You love God, we love God and he is the same God.” Unstoppable, he continued: “Your love of marriage and family, your love of children and babies, your love of
    freedom — religious freedom particularly– your defense of life, your
    desire for harmony and unity and your care for others, your care for
    God’s creation and your care for those who are in need,” the cardinal
    said, were Islamic values also shared by Catholics and areas where there
    could be mutual cooperation. He likened Muslims to earlier waves
    of Roman Catholic immigrants who some 150 years ago faced the same
    challenge of “how to become loyal, responsible, patriotic Americans
    without losing their faith.” He told a woman who had converted from Catholicism to Islam: “Good for you. Keep your faith.” – Are so many of our bishops born without brain stems, or are the brain stems removed when they are ordained bishop?

    • DE-173

      “He likened Muslims to earlier waves of Roman Catholic immigrants.”

      One of my great grandmothers came stateside in 1905 or so with a five spot earned by my grandfather in a dark hell-hole where he faced the perils of death and discrimination, from “Catholics” with names like Dolan.

      They had nothing like this..

      • johnalbertson

        How did someone like Dolan ever get to be archbishop of New York? Not to sound snobbish, but he is vulgarity on steroids. Poor man, he is tearing the archdiocese apart,

    • Conniption Fitz

      The error of CCC 841 in action.

    • Guest

      Dolan is right on the money here.

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  • Bernonensis

    Cain and Abel: a common parentage?

    • Conniption Fitz

      Islam does seem to be the spirit of Cain, of mankind up his own religion, one that caters to the fallen nature/flesh, a product of his own thoughts and desires and violently asserting himself against his obedient brother.

      A Jewish writer also thinks so:

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  • cf. Jm 2: 19-20:
    “You believe in the one God – that is creditable enough, but the demons have the same belief, and they tremble in fear. Do realize, you senseless man, that faith without good deeds is useless.”

    The Church says so and the Jews also acknowledge that Muslims worship the One God. Let’s grant them that. My argument is that they worship what they do not know nor do they worship in Spirit and in Truth [the Son]

    Remember that the Jews do not recognize Jesus as the Christ (the Messiah) [Muslims do], the Son of God, yet we acknowledge that they worship the only One true God.

    The impulse or impulses behind Islam are the same as those of the heathens, getting them to worship the varied gods of said heathens. After the advent of Christ many of those gods fell [some continue] and those impulses could no longer sustain the lie of [many] gods [some are making a rebound]. A new strategy was needed. How about just corrupting the True Religion:

    The Shahada [Islamic creed]: لَا إِلٰهَ إِلَّا الله مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولُ الله | lā ʾilāha ʾil ʾāllāh, muḥammadun rasūlu-llāh | “There is no god but God, Muhammad is the messenger of Allah [God].


    Jn 17:3: And eternal life is this: to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Chris whom you have sent [I believe in God, the Father almighty creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our LORD,].

  • bonaventure

    Cardinal Tauran wondered if those who oppose Islam in Switzerland ever read the Koran.
    I really and seriously wonder if he has?

    Additionally, I wonder if he has read any works recently published by a typical Islamic publishing house?

  • Jimi Burden

    Giving the benefit of the doubt to our bishops, which we well should, their understanding of Islam squares with moderate, progressive Muslims. It may be better for them to stress our commonalities and get allies than to tell our potential allies that their understanding of Islam is defective and that they should read al-Qurtabi or ibn-Tammiya, if they really want to understand their religion.

    Furthermore, it’s arrogant to tell potential Muslim allies that we know their religion better than they do.

    That being said, I completely agree that Islam — in essence — really has no commonalities with Christianity for the reasons outlined in the article above. Muslims hate trinitarian Christians, which is what we all are. The only Christians he accepted were unitarians. This fact often goes unnoticed by ecumenists.

    It’s a difficult line to walk. From a practical perspective, it’s best to build bridges, but we need to know the truth of Islam, which, gathered from previous comments, most of us know well enough.


    We have problems because we do not understand one another, and we do not learn one another. I recommend Muslims read in the Bible, and Christians read in the Quran.
    Quran Online:
    Bible Online: