Skip to comments.The Cross is Banned in Bethlehem
Posted on 12/24/2010 8:04:43 AM PST by massmike
We are far too accustomed to thinking that the Middle East is populated only by Muslims and a few Jews. There are Christians living there, too, often beleaguered and under attack. Here are three stories that remind us during this Christmas season that life for Christians in the Holy Land during this Holy Season can be particularly perilous. First, we learn that the cross, the very symbol of Christianity, has basically been abolished from Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus.
This Christmas in Bethlehem, the cross has been banned from souvenirs for tourists and pilgrims in the Holy Land. Some textile workshops in Jerusalem and Hebron have begun to print and sell T-shirts depicting the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem without the cross. Because of the growth of Islamic fundamentalism in the Palestinian territories, the cross was also removed from t-shirts of football teams.
(Excerpt) Read more at bigpeace.com ...
Anyone that goes to Bethlehem has a screw loose. I probably spent 5 hours on that side of the wall a few years ago. Rather then wait for the bus to come and pick us up I hiked back to the crossing. Wait until Israel gets it all back some day.
I just got back from Israel. There are a grand total of 150,000 Christians there, and most of them are either Arab or Armenian. But that’s no excuse for banning the cross. We don’t ban menorah’s here in the states, and relative to the total population, there are fewer Jews here than Christians in Israel.
The reason for banning religious symbols is appeasement of the Islamists. We were permitted to go up on the Temple Mount, but we were not permitted to take any religious symbols or artifacts, unless they were Islamic. One of our group had taken a Tallit (prayer shawl) to the Wailing Wall, and he was required to leave it with at the security checkpoint before going up to the Temple Mount.
We were told that there had been a Christian woman who was standing in the same position for a long time on the Temple Mount, and the Islamic authorities figured that she was praying. She was ejected.
The Muslims in Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria are on a hair trigger. And the armed IDF soldiers were watching the Temple Mount closely. The second intifada started when Ariel Sharon led a group of Israeli Jews up onto the Temple Mount. Another could be started merely by a Jew going into an area, such as the city of Jericho, that is considered reserved only for Muslims.
During the Hamas takeover, vandals ransacked a Roman Catholic convent and an adjacent school, breaking crosses and smashing the face of a ceramic Jesus. In the following months, unidentified assailants detonated a bomb outside a Christian school, firebombed a Christian bookshop and killed a Christian who worked at one.
Notice, no one claims that Jews did any of these things to persecute Christiansit's the Moslems. Yet these Stockholm-Syndrome Christians repeatedly proclaim their solidarity with the Moon-worshippers who are killing them.
Our Lord does not deserve to have His Cross suppressed in the place of His birth. But I'm sorry to say that these terrorist-collaborators appear to deserve what they're getting.
Memo to the Christian Arabs: Get a militia, and get a life. Jew-hating isn't Christian, and it's a poor excuse for failing to stand up and fight like men.
Hopefully that day will come soon. I was there before Israel started giving up “land for peace” (Hah!). What irony. Just giving Muzzies launching pads for their missiles and hate. Many Palestinian Arabs are Christians indeed.
I agree. It is not safe there, and why push the issue. Our own govt is not supporting Israel.
I belong to the IFCJ- Rabbi Eckstein’s organization. I am a Christian, yet I am troubled by what I hear of treatment of Christians in Israel. My oldest friend just returned from a trip to the Holy Land and she is upset by what she heard and felt.
There are many restrictions, by the Israeli government, against Christians- the very people who are defending the Jewish people against the Muslims.
She was also shocked to learn that women aren’t allowed at the Western Wall.
I wish someone would address this directly. Islam is the enemy of both Jews and Christians. I’d hate to think that Israel considers Christians as distasteful- if less dangerous- than Muslims.
Christians should just boycott that whole region. Instead they pour millions of tourist dollars into it.
Maybe the empty tomb should be substituted instead.
That was the impression my friend got. Used. Dollars welcome- but with some distaste. Arab Christians there asked her to tell others how it is for them. Ambulances won’t go into Christian sections- so she was told- taxes are different too.
I thought it might be propaganda to poison Christians against Israel, but I wonder now with the cross business.
I’d hate to think Christians are being used as a ‘lesser enemy’. I have nothing but love and compassion for the Jewish people, but I hate to think the official view of the Israeli state is as anti-Christian as is Islam( only less openly).
Islam is a vile, barbaric, gutter ‘religion’ for a vile, barbaric, gutter people. It should be wiped off the face of the earth, starting in America.
AMEN! There’s nothing else to say!
Bethelem is controled by the Palestinan Authority. They have been driving the Christians out of Bethelem over the past few years. Their goal is to have no Christians in Bethelem. Don’t blame the Israeli government for something they have no power over. Blame the “tolerant” Moslems of the West Bank.
The day will come when ................
How about a fish instead?
This is Islam in action. Islamists will not be appeased.
Clarification needed here. All women are barred from a section of the Western Wall, including Jewish women. There is a designated women’s area just past the main plaza. It has to do with the extremely religious Jews who in some ways are stuck in the times of ancient traditions and laws taken literally from the Bible. I am not saying they are right, but I have seen some Catholic Churches and Mormon Churches that have separate womens sections. Some traditions live well past their usefulness and will always have the few who insist on literal reading of religious laws. The banning of crosses on everything in Bethlehem is pure hatred and inexcusable but is done in the true spirit of the Koran and Muslim Sharia. One last point, have a Merry Christmas and may all share in the joy and love of the season.
What a shame. I have several beautiful crosses I bought in Bethlehem over 40 years ago.
Merry Christmas and God Bless our troops everywhere.
I understand that it is all women, Jewish as well. Doubly disturbing. I suppose the similarities between Islams hatred of women and the same thing in other religions disturbs me most of all.
Why is it women who remain the targets of such religious discrimination? I cannot speak for Mormons, but I have NEVER heard of a Catholic church that separates the sexes- and I go to the Latin mass!
The hatred of the cross is logical since Islam is Satan worship, but I wish the Jewish people would see it as a weapon against our common enemies.
Israel govt could solve their terrorism problems by ejecting all Muslims.
Not like its the Jews blowing up babies, children, women, etc. over there.
But the Israel govt seems 95 pct “P.C.” (Liberal) which is why it lets its citizens keep dying from their 5th Column.
Thank you for writng this. Arab Christians are dhimiis for the most part. They enjoy their tenth rate citizenship under the Moslems and seem to blame the Jews for their problems! Unbelieveable! And unfortunately, the current Pope seems to see it that way also. Very sad.
“Unidentified assailants” a/k/a radical Moslems. And yet, some people will blame the Jews for this. I am waiting for Pat Buchanan to once again blame the Jews. He has a soft spot for jihadists because they kill, while Jews do not. There are a lot of sick people out there who need a history lesson.
It is Moslems who are driving Christians out of the Middle East and that includes Egypt. I have meet Coptic Christians here who of course, are very pro America and pro Israel. Yet in Egypt, the Coptic Pope has banned Christians from visiting Israel, calling Jews “Christ killers”. When I confront American Copts about this, they say that their Pope “is afraid”. The truth demands that he speak out and say exactly who is persecuting Middle East Christians. Hint: they belong to the Religion of Peace.
according to CIA factbook at cia.gov the religions break down like this:
Jewish 75.5%, Muslim 16.8%, Christian 2.1%, Druze 1.7%, other 3.9% (2008)
Another case of the tail wagging the dog. (I really thought there were more Christians than this)
Like Kenya is highly Christian but Obama as Senator in 2007 went over there and forced a “power sharing” arrangement with the duly elected government and had leader agree to instituted Sharia law in certain areas. Last year he sent Biden over there to force an abortion provision into their constitution. Tell me he is not a Muslim-symp
Are those the stats for Israel? If so, why is the 75% not in more control? I understand that Israel is surrounded by enemies, so the 5th column inside Israel is tolerated out of fear. What I struggle to understand is how some ultra-orthodox Jews are as anti-Christian as they are Muslims. I’ve heard of people being spit on by Hassidic Jews in Israel. How to make sense of all of this, as a Christian supporter of Israel?
Bottom line is the fear. Antagonize Christians- safe. Defy Muslims-violence.
And above all the irony of such contention, still, in the very place where Jesus was born.
Yes, Israel @ 2008. The latest in CIA fact book
I do not see anti-Christian sentiment in Israel (except from some, not many, Muslims) - too much tourism from pilgrimages. But if you walk along the wall in Jerusalem you’ll catch some rocks from the Muslim kids.
However the main Christian body they defer to is Greek Orthodox. Catholics create their own turf battles.
As to Knesset - it was a miracle that Benyamim Netanyahu returned to power. He is probably the only person who will fight to save Israel. The rest are weak. Similar to craven RINOs and sell-out Dems back here.
On your Why isn’t 75% more in control? OK Gays comprise, what? 1-5%, Muslims are also a small minority in USA. Yet, they have “hate crimes” backed up by Holder to keep Whitey Christians in their place.
I can’t help but think some sort of spiritual threshold has been crossed.
Wrong about the Western Wall....women are allowed at the side reserved for WOMEN.....Orthodox Jews do not have mixed worship.
Thank you for your patience and information.
Point taken and understood. Minority pressure is that much more dangerous when violence is a given. Thank you for helping clarify things I’ve been concerned about.
There used to be separation of the genders in Basque Catholic churches - it was a local custom. For centuries, women were required to cover their heads if they entered Catholic churches. This was phased out during the 1960s.
All shrines have their rules, which sometimes are important to maintain tradition. There are fairly rigid rules in the holy places in Jerusalem, which reflects the overall situation. No prayer services of any sort, other than Islamic, are allowed at the Dome of the Rock. Likewise, only Orthodox Judaism may be practiced at the Western Wall, and particular Christian rites are segregated to various areas of the Church of the Holy Sepulcre. A Muslim who went in there and unrolled his prayer rug, would be immediately thrown out.
The segregation of genders in Judaism might look wrong to an outsider, but it is of value in their culture. It is helpful to consider that in a Catholic or Orthodox church, a non-ordained person has no right to enter the sanctuary around the altar. This is a sacred space.
Who owns these fabric factories, and what market are they selling to? The Cross is not banned - in Jordan - one can buy crosses everywhere, many of them are made on the West Bank.
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