Francis and muslims

why is francis saying we need closer ties with the muslims?
rferl.org/content/francis-pope-islam/25181211.html

Isnt the muslim religion antichrist?

the article was very brief and jumbled a number of things together. In their quote of Pope Francis about Muslims, It look like it was taken out of context and the Pope’s comments was probably directed to treating Muslems with kindness and respect which is the was we should treat everyone. The article also made some blanket statement about the Pope stating “liberal” positions which is vague and lead the reader to believe certain things about the Pope which probably are not true. One of the first places Pope Francis visited after becoming Pope was to visit and pray at the tomb of Pope Pius V. who was one of the driving forces to stand up to Muslem aggression in the seige of Viena. He stated and lead a rosary prayer campaign to defeat Muslem aggression. I would look at that example than reading some brief article with a liberal agenda.

For some reason that reminded me of the quote:
“There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.” - Oscar Wilde

I have decided that the Holy Father should just keep on truckin! If he was worried about being taken out of context he would never say anything at all!

-Islam is anti-Christ if the term is defined as “denies (through ignorance or willful ignorance) who Christ really was and what His role really was.”
-Islam is not anti-Christ if the term is defined as “against Christ.”
-The Holy Father’s comment concerning closer ties with Muslims is really no different than any other comment concerning closer ties with followers of other non-Catholic faiths. It’s not a validation of Islam (the Holy Father isn’t making the claim that Islam is equal to Christianity), but a validation of our faith’s teachings in regards to the universality of man and the universality of our faith’s teachings.

Our pope is certainly trying to take on some of the charisma of his namesake, St. Francis. St. Francis went to them with love and not a sword, unlike many Christians at the time. But most importantly he went to them to PREACH THE GOSPEL.

Pax,

Sean

It is important to get the full context of what he said. The full quote comes from his encyclical Evangelii Gaudium, paragraphs 250-254: 250. An attitude of openness in truth and in love must characterize the dialogue with the followers of non-Christian religions, in spite of various obstacles and difficulties, especially forms of fundamentalism on both sides. Interreligious dialogue is a necessary condition for peace in the world, and so it is a duty for Christians as well as other religious communities. This dialogue is in first place a conversation about human existence or simply, as the bishops of India have put it, a matter of “being open to them, sharing their joys and sorrows”. In this way we learn to accept others and their different ways of living, thinking and speaking. We can then join one another in taking up the duty of serving justice and peace, which should become a basic principle of all our exchanges. A dialogue which seeks social peace and justice is in itself, beyond all merely practical considerations, an ethical commitment which brings about a new social situation. Efforts made in dealing with a specific theme can become a process in which, by mutual listening, both parts can be purified and enriched. These efforts, therefore, can also express love for truth.

  1. In this dialogue, ever friendly and sincere, attention must always be paid to the essential bond between dialogue and proclamation, which leads the Church to maintain and intensify her relationship with non-Christians. A facile syncretism would ultimately be a totalitarian gesture on the part of those who would ignore greater values of which they are not the masters. True openness involves remaining steadfast in one’s deepest convictions, clear and joyful in one’s own identity, while at the same time being “open to understanding those of the other party” and “knowing that dialogue can enrich each side”. What is not helpful is a diplomatic openness which says “yes” to everything in order to avoid problems, for this would be a way of deceiving others and denying them the good which we have been given to share generously with others. Evangelization and interreligious dialogue, far from being opposed, mutually support and nourish one another.

  2. Our relationship with the followers of Islam has taken on great importance, since they are now significantly present in many traditionally Christian countries, where they can freely worship and become fully a part of society. We must never forget that they “profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, who will judge humanity on the last day”. The sacred writings of Islam have retained some Christian teachings; Jesus and Mary receive profound veneration and it is admirable to see how Muslims both young and old, men and women, make time for daily prayer and faithfully take part in religious services. Many of them also have a deep conviction that their life, in its entirety, is from God and for God. They also acknowledge the need to respond to God with an ethical commitment and with mercy towards those most in need. In these paragraphs, the Holy Father tells us three reasons why we should seek closer ties with Muslims: [LIST=1]
    *]Because “we can then join one another in taking up the duty of serving justice and peace.”

*]The Holy Father says it is “proclamation” which “leads the Church to maintain and intensify her relationship with non-Christians.” We need to seek greater ties with Muslims so that we can proclaim the Gospel to them. “Evangelization and interreligious dialogue, far from being opposed, mutually support and nourish one another.”

*]We need to seek greater ties with Islam because “we hope and ask to be received and respected in countries of Islamic tradition.” In many Islamic countries, our people are persecuted today. The only way to heal enmity is through love. We have to love them in order to get the respect and freedom in their countries that they enjoy in ours.
[/LIST] The Holy Father also tells us what this openness to Muslims does NOT mean: “What is not helpful is a diplomatic openness which says ‘yes’ to everything in order to avoid problems, for this would be a way of deceiving others and denying them the good which we have been given to share generously with others.”

The Holy Father is not advocating syncretism with Islamic beliefs. He says explicitly, “syncretism would ultimately be a totalitarian gesture on the part of those who would ignore greater values of which they are not the masters.” Jesus has given us the truth and commanded us to share it; we’re not the masters of His teachings, we’re the messengers. We need to open paths of dialog in order to spread the Gospel. That’s why we need better ties with the Muslims; because right now, the problems that divide us are keeping the Gospel away from them, and their souls are too important to let that happen.

Anyway I hope that helps. God bless!

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