The occasional, often ill-considered thoughts of a Roman Catholic permanent deacon who is ever grateful to God for his existence. Despite the strangeness we encounter in this life, all the suffering we witness and endure, being is good, so good I am sometimes unable to contain my joy. Deo gratias!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Muslims Planning Protests of Pope UK VIsit?

This morning I came across an interesting post on the blog, Vivificat, that refers to comments made by Muslims in England concerning Pope Benedict's upcoming visit. The comments were made on a website called, The Islamic Standard, and show the depth of the hatred some Muslims have for the Catholic Church and Pope Benedict XVI. Here are some excerpts:

A change of venue gives Birmingham Muslims a chance to tell the Pope just what they think of him after his insults against the Prophet Muhammad (saws) in 2006 in Regensburg when he said…
“Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.”
As well as this chance to challenge these evil words of this evil Pope, over 80,000 Catholics from all over the UK are also expected to attend the open air ceremony in Cofton Park, Birmingham, after the venue was changed to here from the original plan of doing the pontifs final day at Coventry airport.
The Birmingham site has been selected over Coventry due to its connection to a dead Catholic priest, Cardinal John Henry Newman who is being made into a Catholic ‘saint’ for his supposed miracles witnessed by delusional and misguided catholics after his death.
...We hope Muslims can be there to meet him as well and to also call people away from the shirk of worshipping the dead like the Catholics do...
The Birmingham event however brings the pope and who worship him into direct contact with the the large Muslim population of Birmingham and offers them the perfect chance to learn about Islam and for the Muslims to forbid the Munkar of worshipping dead men and following the dictates of the sodomite child molesting Church of Rome.
We at the Islamic Standard hope the Muslims of Birmingham take this duel opportunity to give Da’wah to these 80,000 travelling disbelievers, whilst at the same time telling the Pope in no uncertain terms what Muslims think of his evil slanders against the last Prophet of God and his message.
I'd write off this hateful screed as just another example typifying the widespread ignorance of Catholic belief and teaching out there today, except that the author in "quoting" the Holy Father had to know that these were not Benedict's words. The pope, in the course of an academic lecture at the University of Regensburg, was not speaking his own beliefs but quoting fourteenth-century Byzantine Emperor Manuel II. Anyone who had read the text of the lecture would know this. I can, therefore, only assume the pope's attacker hadn't read it, it which case he shouldn't have quoted it. Of course, if he had read it, he is being disingenuous at best.

Everyone agrees that the words were not particularly flattering to Mohammed, but they formed a part of a question, a legitimate intellectual inquiry in which the emperor asked a Persian Muslim some of the same questions many of us are asking today of Al-Quida and those who support them and the terrorism they inflict on the innocent; for example, "Is violence justified in the pursuit of religious goals?" and "Is it moral to force people to accept religious beliefs?"

Father James V. Schall, S.J., of Georgetown University has written a wonderful book on the subject of the Holy Father's lecture at Regensburg, a book well worth reading.

Let's pray that most Muslims view this upcoming apostolic visit by Pope Benedict for what it is, an opportunity for the Holy Father to share his faith and God's peace with a nation that has left its Christian roots far behind.

We pray that it will not be used as just another means to attack Christianity and Christ's vicar. And pray, too, for Pope Benedict's safety.

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