Map of India, showing region of West Bengal. Image via Wikipedia
Alliance of Civilizations?
A gang of 50 Muslim extremists disrupted a prayer meeting at a Christian woman’s home in West Bengal, an Indian state that borders Bangladesh. Threatening to burn down the home, the group told Selina Bibi, a convert from Islam to Christianity, that she must leave the area or return to Islam.
The woman, who was baptized a Protestant in March, had been stripped and beaten by local Muslims following her conversion.
25% of West Bengal’s population is Muslim; nationwide, the figure is 13%.
The others are all corrupt. And Pope Benedict is a “cowardly, incompetent and corrupt Pope“. He is a “cultural Christian“, something that would be very interesting to the political elites: the religion only as a “culture”, but meaning no more to the human being.
In order to stop Islam, Breivik argues, you need to put together a broad coalition. Can the Christian churches become part of it? Breivik explains that he was not taken to baptism by his quite agnostic and upscale parents, but at age 15 elected to be baptized and confirmed in the Norwegian Lutheran Church. He later became persuaded, however, that Protestant churches have sold out to a leftist and pro-immigration agenda, and that they should merge into the Catholic Church, which has at least maintained a modicum of European tradition. However, by continuing the dialogue with Islam, “Pope Benedict has abandoned Christianity and all Christian Europeans and is to be considered a cowardly, incompetent, corrupt and illegitimate Pope”.
It will be, accordingly, necessary to get rid both of the Protestant and Catholic leaderships and to call a “Great Christian Congress” in order to establish a new European Church. This Church will be granted a religious monopoly in the new Europe but in turn, Breivik writes, “the Church and church leaders will not be allowed to influence non-cultural political matters in any way. This includes science, research and development and all non-cultural areas which will benefit Europe in the future. This will also include all areas relating to procreation/birth/fertility policies and related issues of scientific importance”. In short, Breivik’s is a cultural Christianity, an instrumentum regni for a new political elite which would confine the Church to purely spiritual and cultural matters.
Add to this that he doesn’t know anything about what it means to be a Christian, that he doesn’t really believe in anything and that he isn’t quoting the Scriptures or stating that he wanted to save “Christian souls” (wouldn’t be the adequate means, at all), and I can safely ask: why this guy is named a Christian?
Turkish people. Not a lot of prospects that their descendants will look like them, if we consider the results of this poll, Image via Wikipedia
In the year 2011, 23 percent of Turks think men should be able to marry up to four wives, but not the opposite – against 10 percent in 1996. Interestingly, 60 percent, both male and female, think women should obey men, while 33 percent think women deserve to be beaten by their husbands if they do not obey – compared to 19 percent in 1996. And, naturally, 70 percent think children may be damaged if mothers work. The political findings of the survey are no less interesting. Seventy-five percent of Turks think the West is at fault for poor relations with Muslim nations. And 53 percent blame the U.S. and West for poverty in Muslim countries. Unsurprisingly, 82 percent have a negative opinion of Christians while only 4 percent have a favorable opinion of Jews. Forty-five percent and 41 percent think that the most violent religions are Christianity and Judaism, respectively. And only 9 percent of Turks believe Arab groups carried out the attacks on 9/11.
“It is true that he sees himself as a crusader and some sort of Templar knight,” said Marcus Buck, a political science professor at Norway’s University of Tromso, referring to an online manifesto that Breivik appears to have authored and which draws inspiration from medieval Christian crusaders.
“But he doesn’t seem to have any insight into Christian theology or any ideas of how the Christian faith should play any role in Norwegian or European society,” Buck wrote in an email message. “His links to Christianity are much more based on being against Islam and what he perceives of as ‘cultural Marxism.’”
From what the 1,500-page manifesto says, Breivik appears to have been motivated more by an extreme loathing of European multiculturalism that has accompanied rapid immigration from the developing world, and of the European Union’s growing powers, than by Christianity.
“My impression is that Christianity is used more as a vehicle to unjustly assign some religious moral weight,” to his political views, said Anders Romarheim, a fellow at the Norwegian Institute for Defence Studies. “It is a signifier of Western culture and values, which is what they pretend to defend.”
“I would say they are more anti-Islam than pro-Christian,” Romarheim said in reference to what appear to be Breivik’s views.
So this guy is as Christian as I am a Martian. He doesn’t understand Christianity and only considers himself as Christian because he thinks it’s the opposite to Islam. He isn’t either defending Christian culture or ideas, as reason, logic and dialectics, which are the basis of the evolution of thoughts and ideas, have nothing to do with killing unarmed boys (or civilians) at a summer holiday camp.
The Left – including the mainstream media, and stealth jihadists themselves, like the ubiquitous Muslim Brotherhood legacy group CAIR, the Council on American-Islamic Relations – won’t even bother to contain its collective glee over the fact that Breivik is a “right-wing Christian.” The narrative is already being constructed that will use him to tar everyone on the Right, particularly vocal critics of Islamic fundamentalism. This is the same Left that hijacks any and all discussions of Islamic terrorism by jumping up to insist that all Muslims must not be smeared because of the actions of a “tiny minority of extremists,” that not all terrorism is committed by Muslims and not all Muslims are terrorists. Of course, no responsible anti-jihadist has ever made such claims, but the Left never bothers to concede this. By contrast, instead of living by the standards they demand of the Right,lLeftists will now be perfectly happy to politicize Breivik’s terrorism and use him to tar everyone on the Right – Christians, conservatives, anti-jihadists, the Tea Party – everyone. And in fact, they have already begun attempting to link the Norway terrorist to Sarah Palin, of all people.
Breivik is a terrorist. His targeting of helpless schoolchildren makes him no better than the slaughterers at Beslan. But that doesn’t make everyone concerned about unfettered Islamic immigration, jihad, or the rapid disintegration of Europe’s cultural heritage a terrorist or even a sympathizer. There is no connection between the legitimate, courageous, lawful work of notable anti-jihadists and such evil. No true Christian, conservative, or responsible critic of jihad would condone Breivik’s despicable, cowardly acts or deem them to be in accordance with our beliefs and values. Much less would we celebrate those acts, unlike our Islamist counterparts. But denouncements of Breivik will be purposefully ignored by the Left.
Nor does it make Islamic terrorism any less of a threat.
There is another thing people are not insisting in sufficiently: there is no basis for calling him a Christian, because, even if he considers him as that (and that is not very clear, after his more than probable faked FB page), there is no evidence than Christianity as a whole supports this guy. There is even less evidence that there is a “jihad” theory inside Christianity (“love thy enemy” seems a pretty different idea…).
Note: I don’t want them to build “Jesus’ mosques”. I want them to respect people who don’t think he is a prophet announcing Muhammad but the Son of God. This is absolutely useless, from my point of view.
Image via Wikipedia
A mosque named after the central figure of Christianity is to become a milestone of interfaith coexistence in Jordan. Both Muslim and Christian leaders expressed their satisfaction when the Mosque of Jesus Christ was opened some time ago. The place of worship was inaugurated in the town of Madaba, 30 km south of the capital, Amman.
“This is a message to the world that Muslims consider Jesus Christ as their prophet, because he informed humanity beforehand that the Prophet Muhammad was coming”, said the imam of the mosque, Belal Hanina. “And this also proves that Islam is a religion of tolerance and has nothing to do with extremism”.
Hanina explained how Christians and Muslims have lived in peace for a long time and have nurtured fraternal ties in this area of the Hashemite Kingdom, an ardent supporter of interfaith dialogue. Christians account for 10 percent of the residents of Madaba and 5 percent of Jordan, which has five and a half million inhabitants.
Holy Land Missions recently purchased a building in a Muslim neighborhood to use as a youth center. A week before the youth center opened, Khoury was summoned to the courthouse.
“Mr. Khoury, there are many complaints that you are going to begin outreaches in the youth center, and many people are afraid these outreaches will be noisy,” a government official told him. “A lot of trouble can come if you are active in that controversial neighborhood.”
Pastor Khoury promptly responded, “Well, it is very interesting that you have been warned about this because we have not even begun yet. So how will those that are concerned about our presence in the neighborhood know if we will cause trouble or noise?”
The government official agreed to let HLM begin its work in the neighborhood, but he warned Pastor Khoury that he expects to see him again.
The same week Pastor Khoury was summoned to the courthouse, a Muslim family threatened to harm HLM pastors and vandalized the center’s locks. The family said they would “break the legs” of anyone who enters the youth center’s gates. “You can break my legs, but you can’t break my faith,” responded the pastor’s son, Steven.
Westerners and Muslims continue to hold negative stereotypes of each other, although views of Muslims in the West appear to have improved marginally over the past five years, according to a new survey released by the Pew Global Attitudes Project, reports IPS.
The survey was based on in-depth interviews with respondents in six predominantly Christian and six predominantly Muslim countries, as well as in Israel and the Palestinian Territories (PT).
“Many in the West see Muslims as fanatical and violent …,” it concluded. At the same time, “Muslims in the Middle East and Asia generally see Westerners as selfish, immoral and greedy – as well as violent and fanatical.
”“The survey obviously gives evidence to those who think there is pretty much an intense and entrenched divide (between the two groups),” noted Andrew Kohut, the Project’s founder and director.
The survey found that majorities or pluralities of respondents in all but three of the countries surveyed said they believed “some religions are more prone to violence than others.”
Among Christian respondents who agreed with that assertion, overwhelming majorities said that Islam was the most violent.
Among respondents in predominantly Muslim countries, on the other hand, similar majorities named Judaism as the most violent. Turkey, however, was an exception: 45 percent pf respondents who said some religions were more violent than others named Christianity as the most violent; 41 percent chose Judaism.
Even when the Copts did not end up behind bars, they did not receive justice. State explained that the Mubarak government sponsored “informal reconciliation sessions” which “generally prevented the criminal prosecution of perpetrators of crimes against Copts, precluded their recourse to the judicial system for restitution, and contributed to a climate of impunity that encouraged further assaults.”
No surprise, failing to exact a penalty for murder and mayhem has led to more murder and mayhem — or what the Hudson Institute‘s Nina Shea called “pogroms and acts of terror.” The failure to punish the perpetrators, complained the Commission, “continued to foster a climate of impunity, making further violence likely.” Even more emphatic was Dina Guiguis of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, who told a recent congressional hearing that “the Egyptian regime is fully responsible for creating the fertile ground on which pernicious and egregious sectarian violence has become routine.”
Unfortunately, those who hoped the Egyptian revolution would better protect Christians and other religious minorities have been disappointed. To the contrary, violent attacks on Copts have been increasing.
As of last month 24 Christians had been killed, more than 200 had been injured, and three churches had been destroyed. Muslim mobs have beset Coptic churches, businesses, and homes. Well-armed thugs also attacked Christians who were protesting against the forgoing attacks.
No surprise, then, that few perpetrators have been arrested, let alone imprisoned. Noted Paul Marshall of the Hudson Institute: “as under Mubarak, the authorities’ refusal to punish attacks on Christians has led to more attacks.” The army even assaulted two Coptic monasteries, supposedly to enforce discriminatory zoning laws (which prohibited walls erected for protection from attacks).
A bomb exploded outside a Protestant church in the central Nigerian city of Suleija on July 10, killing three. The militant Islamist group Boko Haram–which means “Western education is sin”–is suspected.
In the northeastern Nigerian city of Maidiguri, churches were closed on July 10 following a shootout between police and members of Boko Haram, which had reportedly threatened to target churches that day.
An immigrant from the Maghreb has entered the sanctuary of Saint Calogero and has destroyed the image of the patron saint, last July 9th.
The church was open for the 7:30 mass, when the immigrant, of North African origins, has entered and gone directly into the sacristy, where the statue of Saint Calogero was. He took it and threw it violently against the wall, destroying it completely.
A believer who was at the church had tried to arrest the immigrant, but was hurt. Four policemen were needed to control the man and then to arrest him.
Saint Calomero, a Greek saint, lived in the city in the Vth century, evangelised Sicily and is much revered in the island. He is always represented as a black man. In fact, the Agrigento’s archbishop has praised him as “an example of integration between people”.
Two teenage Coptic girls, cousins, were recently kidnapped and then “sold” in Minya, Egypt—the same region where a Coptic church was recently attacked and desecrated. I tried to find this story in English-language media and, as expected, found nothing, except for one report in Al-Masry Al-Youm titled “Clashes between police and Coptic protesters in Minya”—as if that’s the important story (as usual, the media prefers headlines portraying harried Christian minorities as equally culpable as their Muslim persecutors, thereby justifying use of the preferred phrase, “sectarian strife“).
At the end of the Al-Masry Al-Youm report, we get a trailing sentence alluding to “claims” that two Christian girls “were abducted by Muslims and forced to convert to Islam” as the reason why Copts were demonstrating and clashing with the police in the first place.
… The two girls, Christine Azat (aged 16) and Nancy Magdi (aged 14) were on their way to church Sunday, June 12, when they were seized. Their abductors demanded $200,000 Egyptian pounds for their release. The people of the region quickly put their savings together and came up with the ransom money; but when they tried to give it to the kidnappers, they rejected it, saying they had already “sold” the girls off to another group which requires $12 million Egyptian pounds to return them.
Trevor Phillips warned that “an old time religion incompatible with modern society” is driving the revival in the Anglican and Catholic Churches and clashing with mainstream views, especially on homosexuality.
He accused Christians, particularly evangelicals, of being more militant than Muslims in complaining about discrimination, arguing that many of the claims are motivated by a desire for greater political influence.
(…) While the equalities boss promised to fight for the rights of Christians, he expressed concern that many cases were driven by fundamentalist Christians who are holding increasing sway over the mainstream churches because of the influence of African and Caribbean immigrants with “intolerant” views.
In contrast, Muslims are less vociferous because they are trying to integrate into British “liberal democracy”, he said.
The question is: do Christians need to integrate in their country? Because I bet there are much more Christians born in the UK that Muslims…
Yeah, I’m sure Muslim extremists are integrating better…
“The extremists are a challenge to all Nigerians and especially for the Nigerian Muslim community. No Muslim can continue to assert that terrorism has nothing to do with Islam. I am a man of peace and dialogue, I always tell my Muslims that they should isolate the extremists that are present in their communities. It is not enough to say ‘they do not belong to us’, concrete steps to identify and isolate those who are not in line with their activities with the good of the country and the good of Islam itself are needed“, remarked Mgr.Onaiyekan.
The sect is particularly active in the north. A few days ago, the Cathedral of Maiduguri was seriously damaged in an attack claimed by Boko Haram (see Fides 14/6/2011). “Our churches are also affected because they are a very easy target: buildings are clearly visible and unprotected. We do not deploy armed soldiers around our churches, which are places of worship open to everyone”, says the Archbishop of Abuja.
Sher Ahmadzai hit the victim, who was known to him, with a metre-long plank of wood in a street in Radford. Another man then started punching and kicking the fallen man in the face.
Nottingham Crown Court heard that the victim, who was also part of the Afghan community, had converted from Islam to Christianity after claiming asylum in the UK. “This did not sit well with the defendant,” said prosecutor Paul Stimson, adding, “That culminated in the assault in October last year in Hartley Road”. Ahmadzai did not admit any cultural or religious motivation, but admitted causing actual harm and a separate offence of arson. He has been sentenced to 12 months for the assault.
We have to thank him for his exact portrait of what is to live under “tolerant” Islam, though:
A year after his appointment as the first bishop of the overwhelmingly Muslim Comoros–which consists of three islands between mainland Africa and Madagascar–Bishop Mahuza Yava told Aid to the Church in Need that Christians are “well accepted and tolerated.”
“It is a tolerant Islam which has nothing to do with extremism,” he said. “We can freely express ourselves as long as we don’t proselytize. We do not have to fear for our lives as long as we do not infringe upon Islam.”
Bishop Yava added, however, that “a woman who marries a Muslim man will be forced to convert to Islam if she is not strong in her faith,” and “Christian children are badgered by their Muslim friends at school to convert to Islam.”
Most of the nation’s 6,000 Catholics are foreign workers.
Two Christian Iranian women, Maryam Rostampour, 27, and Marzieh Amirizadeh Esmaeilabad, 30, were released from prison this afternoon with no bail amid an international campaign calling for their freedom since their arrest on March 5.
The two women, whose health deteriorated while in detention at the notorious Evin prison in Tehran, are at their homes recovering from their nine-month ordeal, an Iranian source told Compass. They still could face charges of proselytizing and “apostasy,” or leaving Islam.
A Muslim woman has filed a religious-discrimination lawsuit against the Diocese of Allentown, Pennsylvania, claiming that she was dismissed from her job at the diocese because of her faith.
Omayma Arafa, who was a part-time clerical worker, charges that she was fired by a priest who did not respect her religious beliefs. To support this charge, she recalls that she was required to take a lunch break during Ramadan although she was not eating lunch.
even Algerian churches face closure this week after the governor of their province sent them written notice that they were operating “illegally.”
The notice on Sunday (May 22) from Police Chief Ben Salma, citing a May 8 decree from the Bejaia Province governor, also states that all churches “in all parts of the country” will be closed for lack of compliance with registration regulations, but Christian leaders dismissed this assertion as the provincial official does not have nationwide authority.
“All buildings permanently designated for or in the process of being designated for the practice of religious worship other than Muslim will be permanently closed down in all parts of the country, as well as those not having received the conformity authorization from the National Commission,” Salma stated in the notice.
“The Muslim dominated society of Pakistan forbids Christian to eat in any restaurant in Pakistan, a Christian student is forbidden to drink water in a glass in schools in which Muslim student drinks water, a roadside Vendor will beat you and charge you for cup in which you drink tea when he recognize you as Christian, it is Pakistan where Muslim members of National Assembly of Pakistan can block a move to offer prayers for slain Christian member of parliament, so, its not surprising if Muslim members of ruling party in Punjab Assembly are resisting on presentation of annual budget by a Christian Minister Michael Kamran on June 10, 2011” said Dr. Nazir S Bhatti, President of Pakistan Christian Congress PCC, here today.