Sunday, November 23, 2008

Pope Questions Interfaith Dialogue



While Pope Benedict XVI will continue to show the world that he tried by having more interfaith talks, it appears that he knows that nothing will result from them. He sees that these conferences are full of empty talk by Muslims, as nothing actually gets any better for the Christians and Jews living in Islamic countries.


Pope Questions Interfaith Dialogue

By RACHEL DONADIO
Published: November 23, 2008
ROME — In comments that could have broad implications in a period of intense inter-religious conflict, Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday cast doubt on the possibility of interfaith dialogue but called for more discussion of the practical consequences of religious differences.

The pope’s comments were from a letter he wrote to Marcello Pera, an Italian center-right politician and scholar whose forthcoming book, “Why We Must Call Ourselves Christian,” argues that Europe should stay true to its liberal, Christian roots. A central theme of Benedict’s papacy has been to focus attention on the Christian roots of an increasingly secular Europe.

In comments from the letter that appeared on Sunday in Corriere della Sera, Italy’s leading daily, the pope said the book “explained with great clarity” that “an inter-religious dialogue in the strict sense of the word is not possible.” In theological terms, he added, “a true dialogue is not possible without putting one’s faith in parentheses.”

But Benedict added that “intercultural dialogue which deepens the cultural consequences of basic religious ideas” was important. He called for confronting “in a public forum the cultural consequences of basic religious decisions.”

The Vatican spokesman, Rev. Federico Lombardi, said the pope’s comments seemed intended to draw interest for Mr. Pera’s book, not to cast doubt on the Vatican’s many continuing inter-religious dialogues.

“He has a papacy known for religious dialogue, he went to a mosque, he’s been to synagogues,” Rev. Lombardi said. “This means that he thinks we can meet and talk to the others and have a positive relationship.”

Instead, the pope’s remarks seemed aimed at pushing some more theoretical inter-religious conversations into the practical realm.

“He’s trying to get the Catholic-Islamic dialogue out of the clouds of theory and down to brass tacks: how can we know the truth about how we ought to live together justly, despite basic credal differences?” said George Weigel, a Catholic scholar and biographer of Pope John Paul II.

This month, the Vatican hosted a conference with Muslim religious leaders and scholars aimed at improving ties that had been strained in 2006, when some Muslims were offended when the pope quoted a Byzantine emperor criticizing the Prophet Muhammad.

The conference participants agreed to condemn terrorism and protect religious freedom, but they did not address issues of conversion and of the rights of Christians to worship in majority Muslim countries.

The Church is also engaged in dialogue with Muslims organized by the King of Saudi Arabia, a country where non-Muslims are forbidden from worshipping in public.


Link to Article

11 comments:

Christopher Logan said...

The conference participants agreed to condemn terrorism and protect religious freedom, but they did not address issues of conversion and of the rights of Christians to worship in majority Muslim countries.

What is the point of Christians and Jews even showing up? Muslims only show up to get people to stop criticizing Islam.

Apache Man said...

I wonder if the Pope has an agenda? He must know that the muz feel that Christians in Saudi Arabia are, to them, like muz trying to put a small mosque in Vatican City would be to Christians. At the next conference, I'm sure questions about Christian worship in that country will be raised. And what could the possible result of that discussion be? That asks for some pondering.

Christopher Logan said...

Hey Apache,
I believe that he does.

Hengest said...

Islam and Muslims lack a single source of authority that can speak for them or represent them, as such, dialogue in any form is going to be limited just to those who you speak to, who, as previously mentioned, are not the source of authority.

So like trying to put wheels on a tomato, dialogue is pointless.
Islam and Muslims lack a single source of authority that can speak for them or represent them, as such, dialogue in any form is going to be limited just to those who you speak to, who, as previously mentioned, are not the source of authority.

maureen said...

If you read the article it sounds like he does believe that cultural dialog can be effective.
Arguing that Muslims don't have a central authority is a diversion, who other than the Catholic church does have a central authority. Not Jews, not Protestants.
The right of Christians to worship in Islamic states is being addressed. With the exception of Saudi Arabia, there are Catholic churches in every Islamic country. That wasn't true when this dialog began. Things are moving but at a snails pace.

Christopher Logan said...

Hi Maureen,

I did read the article, and putting it with his past statements, shows that he knows that the Islamic world will not change.
No one said that there were no Churches there. Show us where new ones are going up or old ones are being repaired. The reality is that things are getting worse for Christians in Islamic countries.

Iraq:Christian Sisters Murdered, Christians Shut out by the Govt
http://islaminaction08.blogspot.com/2008/11/iraqchristian-sisters-murdered.html


Saudis to Christians: Get out!
http://islaminaction08.blogspot.com/2008/08/saudis-to-christians-get-out.html

Christians Stuck in an Islamic Hell
http://islaminaction08.blogspot.com/search?q=christians+stuck+in+an+islamic+hell

Indonesia:Christianity Under Attack
http://islaminaction08.blogspot.com/2008/10/indonesiachristianity-under-attack.html

Egypt Police Prevent Copts From Repairing Church
http://islaminaction08.blogspot.com/2008/08/egypt-police-prevent-copts-from.html

Interfaith Dialogue, What is it Good for?
http://islaminaction08.blogspot.com/search?q=chruch+repairs

The article clearly said that the rights of Christians in Islamic countries is not being addressed and talk is cheap and meaningless coming from the Islamic world.

Thanks for your comment.

Anonymous said...

Maureen,
Please state some facts. Once Hezbollah, Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood take over the Middle East, Christians do not stand a chance. Christians need to face the reality that Islam is the enemy of all other ideologies.

Ben said...

Anonymous: Christians can not face that reality because to do so would compel them to do something about it.

If they recognize the fact that they are under attack, and have been for damn near 1400 years, then they must muster some sort of defense, which they are loathe to do.

Pacifists stand no chance up against an aggressive enemy.

Go to the Common Word site and read the Christian responses to the Ulema's extortion letter.

The toadies happily lift Satan's tail out of the way and pucker up.

The expression "common word" has its origin in an extortion letter which Moe dispatched to Heraculius.

"In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful (This letter is) from Muhammad, the slave of Allah, and His Apostle, to Heraculius, the Ruler of the Byzantine. Peace be upon the followers of guidance. Now then, I invite you to Islam (i.e. surrender to Allah), embrace Islam and you will be safe; embrace Islam and Allah will bestow on you a double reward. But if you reject this invitation of Islam, you shall be responsible for misguiding the peasants (i.e. your nation). O people of the Scriptures! Come to a word common to you and us and you, that we worship. None but Allah, and that we associate nothing in worship with Him; and that none of us shall take others as Lords besides Allah. Then if they turn away, say: Bear witness that we are (they who have surrendered (unto Him)..(3.64)
http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/hadithsunnah/bukhari/052.sbt.html#004.052.191

Moe demanded that the Byzantines abandon Jesus and accept Islam. The Ulema made the same demand of Pope Benedict and other Christian leaders; they ain't smart enough to figure that out.

I created a Wordpress blog called Go Burn With Muhammad to dissect the letter and responses to it. http://totheulama.wordpress.com .

My initial response to the letter, posted at Freedom Ain't Free, openly declaring it to be an extortion letter, was about 50K in length.

A Common Word between Us and You: Deception has been viewed 295 times. It was viewed once Monday.

Resources: Qur'an Hadith & Tafsir has been viewed 416 times. It presents download links for various translations and formats of Islamic texts and the Bible. It got 8 hits Monday and 7 since about 7:30 Monday night.

Anonymous said...

Ben,
So many of them will remain silent instead of sticking up for the families future?

Ben said...

Yes, Anonymous, the salt has lost its savor. Testicular & spinal fortitude is in desperately short supply.

The government, clergy & academics won't tell the truth about Islam. Its up to us. We are the last wall of defense.

Anonymous said...

I want give they happy time, twelve sky Gold, I work here with 12sky gold. Though, I can not make much money, twelvesky Gold, But I want to Exercise myself, 12Sky Silver Coins, I get up early 12 sky gold.