Wednesday, 9 June 2010

The rising tide of Islamic violence


The Pope's recent visit to Cyprus has highlighted the plight of Christians living in Middle Eastern and Islamic countries. 

First, the news that the murder of a Turkish bishop shortly before the trip may have been an act of jihad, a fact suppressed in the interests of not disrupting Islamic-Catholic relations during the trip.

Secondly, the Pope spoke several times during his visit on the problems faced by Christians in these lands.  He noted that "Cyprus is traditionally considered part of the Holy Land, and the situation of continuing conflict in the Middle East must be a source of concern to all Christ's followers. No one can remain indifferent to the need to support in every way possible the Christians of that troubled region, so that its ancient churches can live in peace and flourish."

A working paper (Linneamenta) for an upcoming Synod of Middle Eastern bishops released during the Pope's trip points to the "extremist current" and the rise of "political Islam" as a threat to Christians.

Of course, it's a threat is Muslims too, particularly if you happen to be a woman, as the film The Stoning of Soraya M, currently doing the rounds, makes clear.  You can read an excellent review of it - and of Western relativist and secularist reactions to it - by Janet Albrechtson in The Australian today.

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