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Islam (Religion)

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  • Franciscan Leader: ‘the Middle East is in Flames’

    08/28/2014 8:13:39 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 12 replies
    The priest who serves as Franciscan superior in the Holy Land and several Middle Eastern nations told an Italian audience that the Arab Spring has brought radical change to the region. “The Middle East that we have known since the [1900s], one which was born from the ruins of the old Ottoman Empire, from the end of various colonialisms and the birth of nation states, is ended,” said Father Pierbattista Pizzaballa. “Now begins a new period, the direction of which, however, we are not yet able to comprehend.” “The main concern at this moment lies in the fear of the...
  • Is James Foley a Martyr? A Brutal Death Sparks a Faith-Based Debate

    08/27/2014 11:27:18 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 65 replies
    Religion News Service ^ | 8/26/14 | David Gibson
    From the moment news broke that U.S. journalist James Foley had been beheaded by Islamic State extremists in the Middle East, many Christians, especially Foley’s fellow Catholics, began calling him a martyr, with some even saying he should be considered a saint. Yet that characterization has left others uneasy, and the discussion is raising larger questions about what constitutes martyrdom. Foley’s parents seemed to validate the martyrdom label when his father, John, spoke at an emotional news conference outside the family’s New Hampshire home and said he and his wife “believe he was a martyr.” Foley’s mother, Diane, added that...
  • King of Bahrain Offers to Help 200 Christian Families from Mosul

    08/27/2014 11:21:39 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 19 replies
    The King of Bahrain, Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa, has said he is willing to help 200 Christian families forced from the homes in Mosul, according to a senior Church official in the region. Bishop Camillo Ballin, Vicar Apostolic of Northern Arabia (Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia) said in a recent interview with Vatican Radio that the monarch was not only willing to assist the families but also receive them in Bahrain. “This shows his generosity towards Christians,” the Bahrain-based bishop said. The monarch visited Pope Francis earlier this year, during which he presented plans for a new Marian...
  • Dhimmitude: Coming Soon to a Country Near You

    08/27/2014 5:26:23 AM PDT · by NYer · 26 replies
    onepeterfive ^ | August 26, 2014 | ANDREW BIESZAD
    The former Archbishop of Mosul, Amel Nona, said that the end of the Church in Iraq at ISISÂ’s hands is a warning to fellow Catholics throughout the world, particularly in the West: Please, try to understand us. Your liberal and democratic principles are worth nothing here. You must consider again our reality in the Middle East, because you are welcoming in your countries an ever growing number of Muslims. Also you are in danger. You must take strong and courageous decisions, even at the cost of contradicting your principles. You think all men are equal, but that is not...
  • Vatican Official, Syrian Prelate Call for International Force to Block Islamic State

    08/26/2014 8:44:54 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 7 replies
    The Vatican’s chief representative at UN headquarters in Geneva has repeated the call of Pope Francis for international leaders to stop the persecution of Christians and Yezidis in Iraq, “though the mechanisms of the United Nations.” Archbishop Silvano Tomasi told Vatican Radio that the Holy See has two objectives for its diplomatic efforts regarding the situation in Iraq: to seek international help to stop the violence against Christiand and Yezidis, and to provide international security for refugees returning to their native villages. Questioned about Boko Haram terrorism in Nigeria, the archbishop said that the international community should “support the Nigerian...
  • LGBT culture clash primed by western activists

    08/25/2014 6:04:29 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 8 replies
    Communities Digital News' The Washington Outsider ^ | August 24, 2014 | Matthew Geiger
    Although LGBT behavior and lifestyles are gaining acceptance in the West, the same cannot be said about many corners of the world. Where the more “liberal” West is defined by its focus on individual rights, the Middle East, Africa, and East are defined more by their focus on cultural rights, thus the individual right to express sexual identity is less significant in these regions than the cultural right to maintain traditional values. Because sexual identify plays a significant role in cultural identity, even tolerating LGBT behavior is asking for a considerable shift in cultural values and practices. Instead of inspiring...
  • USCCB Committee Reaffirms Commitment to Dialogue with Muslims

    08/25/2014 10:07:04 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 9 replies
    The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs has strongly reaffirmed its commitment to engage in dialogue with Muslims. After citing texts from the Second Vatican Council and St. John Paul II on dialogue with Muslims, the committee stated that “sadly, in recent years, there has been a deliberate rejection of this call to engage in dialogue with our Muslim brothers and sisters by some in the Catholic Church and in other ecclesial families.” The committee continued: We understand the confusion and deep emotions stirred by real and apparent acts of aggression and discrimination by...
  • Barbarians at The Gate

    08/24/2014 9:28:10 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 15 replies
    Our Sunday Visitor ^ | 8/20/14 | Greg Erlandson
    ISIS leader’s terror in Iraq, threat to ‘march on Rome’ is forcing Western leaders to take actionIt may sound perverse, but perhaps we owe a small note of thanks to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the head of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Like a bullet whistling overhead, the ruthless rise of ISIS under al-Baghdadi has had the effect of concentrating the fretful and forgetful minds of Western leaders. Despite the various terrors inflicted by al-Qaida, the Taliban and other radical Muslim groups over the years, and despite the spreading regional war between Islam’s Sunni and Shia factions, America...
  • Was Putin Right About Syria?

    08/24/2014 6:06:52 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 9 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | 8/22/14 | Ishaan Tharoor
    What a difference a year makes. Around this time last year, the West was gearing up for military action against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who was accused of carrying out chemical weapons attacks on his own people. That intervention never came to pass, not least because domestic public opinion in countries such as Britain and the United States was opposed to further entanglements in the Middle East. Now, the U.S. is contemplating extending airstrikes on Islamic State militants operating in Iraq in Syria — fighters belonging to a terrorist organization that is leading the war against Assad....
  • Islam’s ‘Relaxation of the Intelligence’

    08/23/2014 4:28:20 PM PDT · by ebb tide · 13 replies
    National Review Online ^ | 8/23/14 | Benedict Kielly
    In times of evil, prophets who see it in what Ronald Knox called a “clear light” are not necessarily heeded, though they are desperately needed. Such a man was Hilaire Belloc, as Monsignor Knox described him at Belloc’s funeral Mass in 1953. “By derivation,” Knox explained, a prophet “is one who speaks out.” Belloc, the first truly revisionist historian, made it his life’s work to speak out. He warned of the rise of Islam throughout the early years of the 20th century and then between the two world wars, when such prophecy seemed absurd. In 2006 another great prophet, Pope...
  • From Raqqa to Mosul: Islamic "Capital" was 1st to be "Cleaned" of Christians & 1st Dhimma Agreement

    08/23/2014 3:15:13 PM PDT · by NYer · 13 replies
    Rorate-caeli ^ | August 23, 2014
    Cross being removed from the Armenian Church in Raqqa, Syria, 2013 Source:  Caffè Storia, August 22, 2014 It was in March 2013, at the peak of the complex phase of the civil war in Syria, when the Jihadist militants of Jabat al-Nusra captured the city of Ar Raqqah (Raqqa or Rakka) from the government troops of President Bashar al-Asad.  In May of 2013, while the United States and Europe were still discussing a possible military intervention in Syria against al-Asad and at the United Nations they were trying to find, without success, tangible proof as to who had really...
  • Libero Quotidiano: "Islam: When Bergoglio attacked Ratzinger"

    08/23/2014 8:39:08 AM PDT · by ebb tide · 11 replies
    rorate caeli ^ | 8/22/2014 | Fausto Carioti
    A story which happened in Buenos Aires eight years ago helps us to understand the position adopted by Pope Francis regarding the ISIS, the “Islamic State” which has embarked on a merciless hunt against Christians. Avoiding, as always, naming Islam and fanatic Muslims, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, invited “stopping the unjust aggressors” without “any bombing” or “starting a war”. A choice which does not seem to leave escape for the victims and for this judged sterile by many: believers (including Antonio Socci from these columns) and non-believers (the case of Massimo Cacciari). In reality this intervention is perfectly in line with...
  • A New Mosque Rises—in Alaska

    08/23/2014 6:46:21 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 34 replies
    The Wall Street Journal ^ | 8/14/14 | Tamara Audi
    Construction Is Part of a Building Boom Nationwide as Muslim Population RisesANCHORAGE—On the edge of this northern outpost an unfamiliar sight is emerging: twin minarets. Alaska's small but growing Muslim community is building the state's first newly constructed mosque. "This is our future," said Osama Obeidi, one of the Muslim-Americans leading the building effort for the Islamic Community Center of Anchorage. "We have second-generation Alaskans now, and new people coming all the time. We need a place to call home." The 15,000-square-foot mosque, taking shape near a Sons of Norway Viking Hall, will eventually include a Sunday school and a...
  • Pope Will Mark 100th Anniversary of Armenian Genocide

    08/22/2014 6:25:04 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 46 replies
    Pope Francis will celebrate a Mass next August to mark the 100th anniversary of the Armenian genocide, an Argentine cardinal has revealed. Speaking at the Armenian Catholic cathedral in Buenos Aires, Cardinal Mario Poli said that the Pontiff will celebrate the commemorative Mass in St. Peter’s basilica. The date for the Mass has not yet been announced.
  • Mission of the Patriarchs in Iraq. The Chaldean Patriarch: No to Sectarian Militias

    08/22/2014 6:08:27 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 8 replies
    Agenzia Fides ^ | 8/21/14
    Erbil (Agenzia Fides) - The defense of the attacked is an absolute right. But only "the forces of the State should take charge of this defense", while the creation of differentiated militia on ethno-religious basis "can destroy Iraq". This is how - according to Lebanese sources - the Patriarch of Babylon of the Chaldeans Louis Raphael I expressed himself during his participation in the initiatives and meetings organized by the Delegation of the Patriarchs of the Eastern Churches that arrived on Wednesday, August 20 in Erbil, capital of the autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan, to express their closeness to refugees...
  • American Decapitated by Englishman

    08/20/2014 7:11:02 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 19 replies
    Steyn Online ^ | 8/20/14 | Mark Steyn
    Today, Wednesday, I started the day with Toronto's Number One morning man, John Oakley, at AM 640. We focused on two stories - the policing of Ferguson, Missouri, and the decapitation by ISIS of my fellow Granite Stater - James Foley of Rochester, New Hampshire, who was kidnapped while reporting on the Syrian uprising. His executioner - the man standing next to him in the picture at right - was speaking with a British accent. That's to say, he's one of thousands of citizens of western nations - British, American, European, Canadian and Australian - who've flocked to join the...
  • Yazidis Haunted by Cries for Help as Militants Bury Victims Alive

    08/20/2014 6:56:03 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 39 replies
    Reuters ^ | 8/20/14 | Humeyra Pamuk
    Refugee Samo Ilyas Ali has nine children to feed but he can't focus on the future because the sounds of women and children crying out for help while being buried alive by Islamic State militants in northern Iraq often consume his mind. Tens of thousand of Yazidis fled their ancient homeland of Sinjar and other villages to escape a dramatic push by the Sunni militants who regard the ethnic minority as devil worshippers who must embrace their radical version of Islam or die. The refugees sit idle in camps in the semi-autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq. Traumatized by Islamic...
  • Lovers Of Ecumenicide Pretend Muslims Worship Our God - They DON'T!

    08/19/2014 7:33:43 PM PDT · by markomalley · 68 replies
    There is a great deal of confusion in the Church today as to whether or not Muslims worship the same God as do we. In fact many prelates, including our own Cardinal McCarrick, either are honestly confused about the matter or they exploit general confusion so that they may appear to be "ecumenical". Indeed, nine years ago at Catholic University His Eminence addressed some Muslim dignitaries; in that address he invoked "allah" three times but he gave not one mention to Jesus Christ. That address, which can be called de facto idolatry, is here. Cardinal McCarrick and other devotees of...
  • ISIS IS True Islam

    08/19/2014 6:41:30 PM PDT · by markomalley · 18 replies
    Shoebat ^ | 8/19/2014 | Walid Shoebat
    Reading the papers is reading authors of confusion. They say “Saudi top cleric blasts al-Qaida and ISIS as ‘enemy No. 1′ of Islam” in a statement issued in Riyadh.“The ideas of extremism, radicalism and terrorism … have nothing to do with Islam and (their proponents) are the enemy number one of Islam,” the kingdom’s top cleric said.He cited jihadists from the Islamic State, which has declared a “caliphate” straddling parts of Iraq and Syria, and the global al-Qaida terror network. Really? ISIS and al-Qaida do not represent Islam? ISIS IS ISlam and ISlam is ISIS.Muslims frequently say that we, the...
  • Pope Endorses "Force" To Stop ISIS

    08/18/2014 2:32:47 PM PDT · by NYer · 32 replies
    Creative Minority Reporta ^ | August 18, 2014 | Patrick Archbold
    In his most explicit statement yet, the Pope endorses the use of force to stop the monsters of ISIS, well, as close as he is likely to come. ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE (AP) — Pope Francis on Monday endorsed the use of force to stop Islamic militants from attacking religious minorities in Iraq but said the international community — and not just one country — should decide how to intervene. Francis also said he and his advisers were considering whether he might go to northern Iraq himself to show solidarity with persecuted Christians. But he said he was holding off...
  • "I have lost my Diocese to Islam - You in the West will also become the victims of Muslims"

    08/18/2014 4:18:26 AM PDT · by NYer · 17 replies
    Rorate-caeli ^ | August 16, 2014
    FULL TITLE: Archbishop of Mosul: "I have lost my Diocese to Islam - You in the West will also become the victims of Muslims" Armenian Orthodox church in Raqqa, Syria, now an ISIS office Our sufferings today are the prelude of those you, Europeans and Western Christians, will also suffer in the near future. I lost my diocese. The physical setting of my apostolate has been occupied by Islamic radicals who want us converted or dead. But my community is still alive. Please, try to understand us. Your liberal and democratic principles are worth nothing here. You must consider again...
  • 5 Ways the Quran Explains Today’s Headlines

    08/17/2014 7:51:59 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 13 replies
    Pajamas Media ^ | 08/17/2014 | Robert Spencer
    Nihad Awad of the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has claimed [2] that “research has shown that anti-Islam prejudice goes down when people interact with ordinary Muslims and have greater knowledge of Islam.” Accordingly, he says, “it might also be a good idea for Americans of other faiths to borrow a Quran from a Muslim friend, neighbor or co-worker. In that way, knowledge may be increased as bonds of friendship are formed.”Awad is right. Americans should read the Quran. If they did, they would find that it makes sense of a great many recent events that might otherwise remain...
  • The battle of our century (the war within Islam that has lethal consequences for all)

    08/16/2014 1:40:05 PM PDT · by NYer · 14 replies
    CERC ^ | August 15, 2014 | FATHER RAYMOND J. DE SOUZA
    The battle of our centuryFATHER RAYMOND J. DE SOUZAIt is not a war between religions. It is a war within Islam that has lethal consequences for all those it touches. It began dramatically on Sept. 11, 2001. Our century is characterized by a lethal theological war in the house of Islam, with brutal consequences for the whole world, whether it be lower Manhattan or northern Iraq. Centuries are not exactly 100 years long. The late British historian Eric Hobsbawm proposed a more persuasive division of history with his "long 19th century," which began with the French Revolution in 1789 and...
  • Muhammed Is Britain's Most Popular Boys Name

    08/15/2014 7:22:59 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 17 replies
    Breitbart ^ | 8/15/14 | Andre Walker
    As exclusively reported by Breitbart London last week, Muhammed has been crowned Britain's most popular boys name in figures published by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) today. The name of the Muslim prophet beat Oliver as the most popular boys name chosen by parents in Britain in 2013. As a result of the way the statistics are put together, the name does not appear to have won, as the ONS classifies each of the different spellings as a different entry on the list. This means that "Muhammad" came in 15th with 3,499 children but "Mohammed" was 23rd with 2,887...
  • Holy See’s statement to cowardly terrorists, calls out mullahs, imams (Fr. Z)

    08/13/2014 2:44:36 PM PDT · by Mrs. Don-o · 19 replies
    Fr. Z's Blog ^ | 12 August 2014 | Fr. John Zuhlsdorf
    [Fr. Z's comments in brackets and italics.]Bolded sections are from the document, Fr. Z's emphasis.The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue released a statement about the wave of terror washing across Syria and Iraq. The statement was in French. HERE Here is an English translation: The whole world has witnessed with incredulity what is now called the “Restoration of the Caliphate,” which had been abolished on October 29,1923 by Kamal Ataturk, founder of modern Turkey. Opposition to this “restoration” by the majority of religious institutions and Muslim politicians has not prevented the “Islamic State” jihadists from committing and continuing to commit...
  • Russian Expert on Islam Believes We'll Soon Forget About Secular Turkey

    08/13/2014 6:06:54 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 7 replies
    Interfax ^ | 8/13/14
    Moscow, August 13, Interfax - Renowned expert on Islam Roman Silantyev believes that Turkey leaves behind the secular character of the state and it will inevitably influence life of the country's Christians. "Turkey has already been turned into an analogue of Saudi Arabia. Soon, we should forget about secular Turkey, and it will make the life of local Christians more difficult," the expert told Interfax-Religion on Wednesday commenting on Recep Tayyip Erdogan's victory at the presidential elections. Silantyev believes that when Erdogan was a prime-minister, Turkey has become "a weak-willed satellite of dwarfish Qatar, not even America, as Qatar representatives...
  • What Did the Saints Say about Islam?

    08/12/2014 5:42:02 PM PDT · by ebb tide · 26 replies
    OnePeterFive ^ | August 12, 2014 | Andrew Abeiszad
    For Islamic scholars, there is a statement in the apostolic exhortation of Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, which is particularly troubling: Faced with disconcerting episodes of violent fundamentalism, our respect for true followers of Islam should lead us to avoid hateful generalisations, for authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence. (p. 253) As the situation in the Middle East escalates, and the violence of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) spills rivers of innocent Christian blood, this statement seems incongruous with reality. Popes are certainly free to have personal opinions....
  • Pontifical Council speaks out against terror in name of religion

    08/12/2014 4:46:25 PM PDT · by markomalley · 6 replies
    Radio Vaticana ^ | 8/12/2014
    The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue has issued a statement deploring the upsurge in violence in Iraq, calling on religious leaders, those involved in interfaith dialogue and on all men and women of good will, to unequivocally condemn terror in the name of religion. The Council also calls on religious leaders “to exercise their influence with the authorities to end these crimes, to punish those who commit them and to reestablish the rule of law throughout the land, ensuring the return home of those who have been displaced."Below please find the English translation of the original French text:The whole world...
  • Vatican calls on Muslim leaders to condemn ISIL: “No cause, no religion, can justify such barbarity”

    08/12/2014 2:58:12 PM PDT · by NYer · 41 replies
    The Deacon's Bench ^ | August 12, 2014 | Deacon Greg Kandra
    From CNS: The Vatican called on Muslim leaders to condemn the “barbarity” and “unspeakable criminal acts” of Islamic State militants in Iraq, saying a failure to do so would jeopardize the future of interreligious dialogue. “The plight of Christians, Yezidis and other religious and ethnic communities that are numeric minorities in Iraq demands a clear and courageous stance on the part of religious leaders, especially Muslims, those engaged in interfaith dialogue and everyone of goodwill,” said a statement from the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue released by the Vatican Aug. 12. The full statement, from the Vatican: The whole world...
  • Iraqi Christians ‘dying in crowded refugee camps’

    08/12/2014 2:21:33 PM PDT · by NYer · 11 replies
    Catholic Herald ^ | August 12, 2014 | SIMON CALDWELL
    Displaced Iraqi Christian families, who fled from the village of Hamdaniya near the northern city of Mosul (PA) Iraqi Christians driven from their homes by Islamic State fighters are beginning to die in crowded camps, witnesses have claimed.Sahar Mansour, 40, who lectured in chemistry at the University of Mosul before she fled the city in June, said newborn babies, the sick and the elderly in the Ankawa refugee camp on the outskirts of Irbil are dying from diseases, thirst and malnutrition. Mansour now resides in the camp.The same claim was made by Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Sako of Baghdad, who...
  • Aceh, the Operative Base for the Islamic Caliphate in Asia, Through Recruitment and Indoctrination

    08/12/2014 10:30:29 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 5 replies
    AsiaNews ^ | 8/12/14 | Mathias Hariyadi
    Fringes of the jihadist movement already active in 16 provinces in the Indonesian archipelago. Thousands of people have sworn allegiance to the fundamentalist leader Abu Bakar Al-Baghdadi. Most are veterans of the jihad with extensive experience in Afghanistan or, on the domestic front of the Moluccas. Jakarta: some areas are "fertile ground" for enrollment. Jakarta (AsiaNews) - It has yet to make any startling conquests in the Asian nation, but the Indonesian section of the Islamic State (formerly ISIS, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) has already started mass recruitment - as recently reported- in over 16 provinces of...
  • Catholic Iraqi Refugees in Lebanon Recall Horror of Militant Attacks

    08/11/2014 3:33:17 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 4 replies
    Catholic News Service ^ | 8/11/14 | Doreen Abi Raad
    BEIRUT (CNS) -- The memory of that brutal June evening in his home near Mosul, Iraq, brought 48-year-old Joseph, now a refugee in Lebanon, to tears. "These people know no limits of humanity, decency, or respect for human life," he said of the Islamic State fighters. Meeting with Catholic News Service Aug. 8 at the Caritas Lebanon Migrant Center in Beirut, he and other Catholic Iraqi refugees asked that their real names not be used to protect their identities as they shared the traumatic experiences that led to their exodus. Joseph recalled how his wife and their teenage son, Bachar,...
  • The Dream of the Caliphate Spreads to Asia, Raising Fears of Violence in Indonesia and Malaysia

    08/11/2014 11:55:44 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 7 replies
    Asia News ^ | 8/11/14
    Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta warn that followers of the Islamic State are ready to strike their countries of origin. Governments, public places and other sensitive spots are their main targets. The goal is to erase secular and pluralist constitutions in order to introduce Sharia-inspired rules. At least 20 Malaysian nationals are in Syria to fight the jihad. The first recruits from the Philippines are reported.Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews/Agencies) - Anti-terrorism experts from Malaysia and Indonesia have reported that several Malaysians and Indonesians have recently joined the Islamic State terror group (formerly known as ISIS), which is active in Iraq and Syria,...
  • Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan Has WON–So What Lays Ahead?

    08/11/2014 4:10:15 AM PDT · by markomalley · 12 replies
    Shoebat ^ | 8/11/2014 | Walid Shoebat
    As we predicted. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has won the presidential election with 52 percent of the vote, according to early results. Thus, Erdogan has become the country’s first popularly-elected head of state. He appears triumphant with the crowds of millions carrying fiery red, hyacinth blue, and sulfur yellow flags. (Revelation 19:17)  With 98.75 percent of the ballots counted, Erdogan leads with 52 percent, the Hurriyet Daily reports. Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, former Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, has received 38 percent of the votes. Selahattin Demirtas, head of the leftist pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party, is in third place with just...
  • Remembering Regensburg

    08/10/2014 7:21:15 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 6 replies
    'I was reminded of all this recently, when I read the edition by Professor Theodore Khoury (MĂĽnster) of part of the dialogue carried on - perhaps in 1391 in the winter barracks near Ankara - by the erudite Byzantine emperor Manuel II Paleologus and an educated Persian on the subject of Christianity and Islam, and the truth of both.[1] It was presumably the emperor himself who set down this dialogue, during the siege of Constantinople between 1394 and 1402; and this would explain why his arguments are given in greater detail than those of his Persian interlocutor.[2] The dialogue...
  • The Demon Wolves of ISIS: Ancient Assyria Reborn

    08/10/2014 5:44:21 PM PDT · by Biggirl · 14 replies
    Patheos.com ^ | August 10, 2014 | Father Dwight Longenecker
    Lord Byron’s poem The Destruction of Sennacherib begins with the line, “The Assyrian came down like a wolf on the fold.” My friend Paul Thigpen makes the link between the warlords of the Islamic State (IS) and their historic predecessors, the warlike Assyrians.
  • Priest from Nineveh: 'Christianity is Finished in Iraq'

    08/10/2014 6:34:53 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 38 replies
    Catholic News Agency ^ | 8/8/14 | Elise Harris
    Rome, Italy, Aug 8, 2014 / 04:30 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A priest hailing from what used to be Iraq’s largest Christian city has lamented the exodus of over 100,000 Christians from the city, many of whom are fleeing on foot with no food, money or water. “Today the story of Christianity is finished in Iraq,” said a priest who identified himself as Fr. Nawar. “People can’t stay in Iraq because there is death for whoever stays,” told CNA Aug. 8. A priest who has been living and studying in Rome for the last three years, Fr. Nawar is originally from...
  • 'Jihadist' Flag Flown in East London

    08/08/2014 6:41:20 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 5 replies
    The Guardian (UK) ^ | 8/7/14 | Rajeev Sayal
    Flag flown outside housing estate on Poplar High StreetA black flag with white Arabic writing, similar to those flown by jihadist groups, was flying at the entrance of an east London housing state near Canary Wharf. In a highly provocative gesture, the emblem was planted on top of the gates of the Will Crooks estate on Poplar High Street, and is surrounded by flags of Palestine and slogans. The flag bears similar writing to the jihadi flags that have been flown by the extremist group in Iraq and other jihadi groups since the 1990s. When the estate was approached last...
  • ‘A Real Via Crucis’: Pope Francis, Patriarch Plead on Behalf of Iraq’s Christians

    08/08/2014 6:23:57 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 17 replies
    Pope Francis has renewed his appeal to the Church to intercede for the persecuted Christians of Iraq. “The Holy Father is following with deep concern the dramatic news reports coming from northern Iraq, which involve defenseless populations,” Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Holy See Press Office, said in a statement issued August 7. “Christian communities are particularly affected: a people fleeing from their villages because of the violence that rages in these days, wreaking havoc on the entire region.” “At the Angelus prayer on July 20th,” Father Lombardi recalled, “Pope Francis cried with pain: ‘[O]ur brothers and sisters...
  • French basilica desecrated [by Muslim]

    08/07/2014 7:20:58 PM PDT · by markomalley · 33 replies
    CWN ^ | 8/7/2014
    Two churches in Thonon-les-Bains, a city of 30,000 in eastern France, were desecrated on August 5, according to Le Messager, a newspaper based in Chablais. A man in his thirties entered St. Hippolytus Church and the Basilica of St. Francis de Sales and destroyed or damaged altars, stained glass, statues, candelabras, and a bronze cross. He also tore open a tabernacle and trampled on the Eucharist. The man suspected in the desecration is a “young Muslim,” a local priest said. Additional sources for this storySome links will take you to other sites, in a new window. Thonon-les-Bains: crise de vandalisme...
  • Islamic State pulls down church crosses in northern Iraq as 200,000 flee

    08/07/2014 9:58:28 AM PDT · by Biggirl · 40 replies
    The Telegraph ^ | August 7, 2014 | Barney Henderson And Agencies
    Islamic State jihadists who took over large areas of northern Iraq overnight have forced thousands of Christians to flee and occupied churches, removing crosses and destroying manuscripts, Chaldean Patriarch Louis Sako has said. “(The Christians) have fled with nothing but their clothes, some of them on foot, to reach the Kurdistan region,” Patriarch Sako told AFP.
  • Thousands of Iraqis Flee as Militants Seize ‘Christian Capital’

    08/07/2014 6:08:17 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 16 replies
    The Catholic Herald (UK) ^ | 8/7/14 | Staff Reporter
    Thousands of Iraqi Christians are fleeing after Islamic State militants seized the minority’s biggest town in Iraq, according to reports. The Islamic State, formerly ISIS, captured Qaraqosh in Nineveh province overnight after Kurdish forces withdrew from the town. The French Christian organisation Fraternite en Irak said in a post on Facebook that a majority of those living in Nineveh left after militants took over Qaraqosh, known as the Christian capital of northern Iraq, and surrounding towns. “It’s a catastrophe, a tragic situation: tens of thousands of terrified people are being displaced as we speak,” said Joseph Thomas, the Chaldean archbishop...
  • ISIS sweep forces religious minority to die of thirst on mountain

    08/06/2014 8:45:08 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 17 replies
    Hot Air ^ | August 6, 2014 | Ed Morrissey
    Not Christians or Shi’ites this time, but the Yazidis, whose numbers reach as high as 600,000 in Iraq — and dropping, especially in Sinjar. The sacking of Sinjar has forced the Yazidis to flee to nearby Mount Sinjar to escape brutal execution. What they face on the mountain is a death just as certain, though, and perhaps as torturous: Stranded on a barren mountaintop, thousands of minority Iraqis are faced with a bleak choice: descend and risk slaughter at the hands of the encircled Sunni extremists or sit tight and risk dying of thirst. Humanitarian agencies said Tuesday that between...
  • Baghdad Patriarch Tells Pope that the Iraqi Christian Tragedy is Rooted in Superpowers' Selfishness

    08/06/2014 6:22:02 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 7 replies
    AsiaNews ^ | 8/5/14
    In a letter to Pope Francis, eastern patriarchs and the presidents of bishops' conferences around the world, Mar Sako calls on the international community to come to grips with the situation and take "concrete actions". The survival of the Christian minority is at stake and a strong stance is needed, even by Muslims. He appeals for help and solidarity.Baghdad (AsiaNews) - The international community and the world's superpowers must realise the need for "concrete actions of solidarity" for Iraqi Christians because the "very survival" of the minority in the country and in middle East is at stake, said Raphael Louis...
  • Bishop Pledges to Stay in Libya: ‘I Cannot Leave the Few Remaining Christians’

    08/05/2014 7:20:14 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 13 replies
    As rival militias battle for control of Libya, the apostolic vicar of Tripoli, Bishop Giovanni Martinelli, has pledged to remain in the North African nation “even if only one Christian remains.” Islamist militias have held sway in some areas of the country since NATO’s 2011 military intervention helped lead to the fall of the regime of Muammar Gaddafi. “The Christian community in Libya is now reduced to a minimum, but I intend to stay here even if only one Christian remains,” the Italian Franciscan bishop told the Fides news agency.
  • Islamic State Seizes Territory Inside Lebanon

    08/05/2014 7:15:22 AM PDT · by marshmallow · 1 replies
    The Daily Telegraph (UK) ^ | 8/4/14 | Carol Malouf and Richard Spencer,
    The jihadists of Islamic State have seized their first territory inside Lebanon, a long-feared strike that threatens the country's uneasy sectarian balance. A Syrian rebel group which has sworn allegiance to the Islamic State's leader has set up check-points in the Lebanese town of Arsal on the two countries' border, though it has stopped short of declaring it part of the IS's "Caliphate". Lebanese army troops have moved up to attack the town, pouring in shells and putting at risk not only the 40,000 local inhabitants but the estimated 120,000 Syrian refugees who have taken shelter there. The crisis brought...
  • Muslims are crucifying Christians who refuse to convert to the Religion of Peace

    08/04/2014 1:24:18 PM PDT · by markomalley · 43 replies
    WDTPRS ^ | 8/4/2014 | Fr. John Zuhlsdorf
    From the Quran: “The punishment of anyone who fights against Allah and His apostle and do mischief in the land is to be killed or crucified or to have their hands and feet from opposite ends or be banished from the land.” (Quran: The table spread – Sura 5:33) Won’t convert?  Won’t pay your fine for being an infidel? You have 4 punishments options: public execution (Qatl), crucifixion (Salb) and amputation of one hand and one foot from opposite sides (Yuqata’ Aydihim wa-Arjulihim) or exile (Nafy).At Christian Post: Christians ‘Crucified Again’ for Refusing IslamTo the awe of its readership, a...
  • Muslim movement accepts once-taboo causes

    08/02/2014 7:34:31 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 36 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Aug 2, 2014 9:20 AM EDT | Gillian Flaccus
    Omar Akersim prays regularly and observes the dawn-to-dusk Ramadan fast. He is also openly gay. Akersim, 26, is part of a small but growing number of American Muslims challenging the long-standing interpretations of Islam that defined their parents’ world. They believe that one can be gay and Muslim; that the sexes can pray shoulder-to-shoulder; that females can preach and that Muslim women can marry outside the faith—and they point to Quran passages to back them up. The shift comes as young American Muslims work to reshape the faith they grew up with so it fits better with their complex, dual...
  • Syriac Orthodox Bishop: Muslims Enemies of Christ

    08/01/2014 8:15:49 PM PDT · by marshmallow · 15 replies
    BEIRUT: The Syriac Orthodox bishop of Mount Lebanon and Tripoli George Saliba Wednesday denounced Muslims as enemies of Jesus, accusing them of a history of violence and oppression against Christians. “What is happening in Iraq is a strange thing, but it is normal for Muslims, because they have never treated Christians well, and they have always held an offensive and defaming stand against Christians,” Elnashra.com reported Saliba as saying in a radio interview. “We are not calling for armament and war; we don’t have the capacities,” Saliba said. “We used to live and coexist with Muslims, but then they revealed...
  • A Brave Open Letter, by the Syriac Catholic Archbishop of Mosul (Jesus has conquered the world)

    08/01/2014 2:45:45 PM PDT · by NYer · 5 replies
    Rorate-caeli ^ | August 1, 2014
    Due to the false videos, false rumors of destroyed churches, false rumors of invasion that cause great fear among an already frightened people, the Archbishop of Mosul (Syriac Catholic Church), published the following open letter. Open Letter of His Excellency Youhanna Boutros (John Peter) Moshe,  Syriac Catholic Archeparch of Mosul and Qaraqosh Sunday, July 27, 2014 To All Priests, to all Monks and Nuns, to all Deacons, and to all those who have faith in Jesus Christ: May the peace and love of God come upon you, your homes, and your families, and upon all those who have come...