Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Pope baptizes famous Muslim convert
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080322/ts_nm/pope_easter_dc ^ | 18 minutes ago | Philip Pullella

Posted on 03/22/2008 4:04:50 PM PDT by BenLurkin

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Benedict led the world's Catholics into Easter on Saturday at a Vatican service where he baptized a Muslim-born convert who is one of Italy's most famous and controversial journalists.

The German-born pontiff, marking the third Easter season of his pontificate, began the service in the atrium of a darkened St Peter's Basilica where he carved the Greek letters Alpha and Omega on a large candle.

The basilica became a sea of flickering flames as thousands of faithful inside lit candles before the lights were turned on in a ritual symbolizing the darkness in the world after Christ's death and the light of the resurrection.

Easter, the most important day in the Church's liturgical calendar, commemorates Christ rising from the dead three days after he was crucified.

In his sermon, Benedict wove a connection between the resurrection of Christ and the sacrament of baptism, the initiation rite of Christianity.

"...from the abyss of death he was able to rise to life. Now he raises us from death to true life. This is exactly what happens in baptism," the pope said.

The pope traditionally baptizes newborns on January 1 and adult converts to Catholicism on Easter eve.

One of the seven adults he baptized on Saturday night was Magdi Allam, 55, an Egyptian-born journalist who, as deputy director of the leading newspaper Corriere della Sera, is one of Italy's best-known intellectuals.

Allam, a fierce critic of Islamic extremism and a strong supporter of Israel, is protected by a police escort because of threats he has received.

WELL-KEPT SECRET

His conversion to Christianity was a well-kept secret, disclosed by the Vatican in a statement less than an hour before the Easter eve service started.

"For the Catholic Church, each person who asks to receive baptism after a deep personal search, a fully free choice and adequate preparation, has a right to receive it," it said.

Allam defended the pope in 2006 when the pontiff made a speech in Regensburg, Germany, that many Muslims perceived as depicting Islam as a violent faith.

The Vatican statement announcing Allam was joining Catholicism said all newcomers were "equally important before God's love and welcome in the community of the Church."

Allam, who has been living in Italy for 35 years, has said he was never a very devout Muslim. Still, his conversion to Christianity came as a surprise.

"What amazes me is the high profile the Vatican has given this conversion," Yaha Sergio Yahe Pallavicini, vice-president of the Italian Islamic Religious Community, told Reuters.

The Easter eve service was the first of three at which the pope presides. On Sunday he will celebrate a mass and then deliver his twice-yearly "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city and the world) blessing and message.


TOPICS: Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: baptism; baptizes; convert; exmuslims; muslim; muslimbaptism; pope; vatican
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-2021-4041-49 next last

1 posted on 03/22/2008 4:04:52 PM PDT by BenLurkin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

ruh roh.


2 posted on 03/22/2008 4:10:51 PM PDT by Jeff Chandler (Iím gonna get me a shotgun and kill all the whiteys I see...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

Good luck getting life insurance buddy.


3 posted on 03/22/2008 4:11:57 PM PDT by mainepatsfan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

Pope Benedict just farted in Sammy’s general direction.
Viva Papa!


4 posted on 03/22/2008 4:13:47 PM PDT by sono (Barack Obama's chickens are coming home to roost.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

wow. Hundred of years after the crusades and thousands of years after Jesus Christ, and the sprinkling of water on a muslim in the name of Jesus is still major news. And the penalties for freedom of conscience are the same - losing your head.


5 posted on 03/22/2008 4:14:35 PM PDT by I still care ("Remember... for it is the doom of men that they forget" - Merlin, from Excalibur)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mainepatsfan

Sad isn’t it?


6 posted on 03/22/2008 4:15:06 PM PDT by BenLurkin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

I really need to visit Rome before it blows up. That said, welcome to the Church Allam!


7 posted on 03/22/2008 4:15:18 PM PDT by Vince Ferrer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

Ben,

Already posted here:
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-bloggers/1990030/posts?page=3#3

Thanks!
NeverGore


8 posted on 03/22/2008 4:15:36 PM PDT by nevergore ("It could be that the purpose of my life is simply to serve as a warning to others.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Vince Ferrer

“There is no overarching Muslim law on conversion. But under a widespread interpretation of Islamic legal doctrine, converting from Islam is apostasy and punishable by death — though killings are rare.”

Talk about just falling off the turnip truck.


9 posted on 03/22/2008 4:17:38 PM PDT by ChinaGotTheGoodsOnClinton (To those who believe the world was safer with Saddam, get treatment for that!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

On a separate note...

I really hve a bad feeling regarding the Pope’s upcoming visit to New York and Washington DC.

I really believe Al Queda is going to try to kill him here...


10 posted on 03/22/2008 4:18:53 PM PDT by nevergore ("It could be that the purpose of my life is simply to serve as a warning to others.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

Sounds like Benedict has taken up the flag from John Paul II. Viva Papa!! God Bless You.


11 posted on 03/22/2008 4:20:43 PM PDT by mc5cents (Show me just what Mohammd brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mainepatsfan
Good luck getting life insurance buddy.

In its broadest and most enduring sense, that matter is settled.

12 posted on 03/22/2008 4:21:41 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (Free New York)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: ChinaGotTheGoodsOnClinton
But under a widespread interpretation of Islamic legal doctrine, converting from Islam is apostasy and punishable by death — though killings are rare.”

Oh really?

13 posted on 03/22/2008 4:22:22 PM PDT by mc5cents (Show me just what Mohammd brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin

Very.


14 posted on 03/22/2008 4:24:05 PM PDT by mainepatsfan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin
"What amazes me is the high profile the Vatican has given this conversion," Yaha Sergio Yahe Pallavicini, vice-president of the Italian Islamic Religious Community, told Reuters.

I thought the whole article seemed rather low-key. It is the media, of which this man is apparently quite an influential member, that is carrying the story.

But you're supposed to blame the Pope and the Church.

15 posted on 03/22/2008 4:24:32 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (Free New York)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Vince Ferrer

I second your welcoming of this man to the faith. And I honor both the Pope and him for doing it “in front of God and everybody” instead of some semi-secret way.


16 posted on 03/22/2008 4:25:21 PM PDT by Emmett McCarthy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin
Wow. Maybe the pope's wardrobe team should look into a kevlar mitre and vestments.

I applaud his courage to take a public stance on what I'm sure he understands could be a very volatile situation. It would have been just as easy to have some local priest baptize him in a private ceremony.

17 posted on 03/22/2008 4:26:08 PM PDT by Pablo64 (What is popular is not always right. What is right is not always popular.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nevergore

If he was killed, do you think the billion plus Catholics may grab a bucket and help us drain that swamp?


18 posted on 03/22/2008 4:27:42 PM PDT by Selmore (Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: BenLurkin
"What amazes me is the high profile the Vatican has given this conversion," Yaha Sergio Yahe Pallavicini, vice-president of the Italian Islamic Religious Community, told Reuters.

I thought the whole article seemed rather low-key. It is the media, of which this man is apparently quite an influencial member, that is carrying the story.

But you're supposed to blame the Pope and the Church.

19 posted on 03/22/2008 4:32:12 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (Free New York)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nevergore

Thank you sir.


20 posted on 03/22/2008 4:42:15 PM PDT by BenLurkin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-2021-4041-49 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson