I know many of you will disagree with me on this, but please hear me out. I am a faithful and devout Catholic and I was saddened to hear the Pope’s remarks and the reactions of Muslims worldwide and the Vatican’s response.
The Holy Father should apologize.
I agree with the Pope that Holy War in the name fo religion can never be justified. However I found itsad that the Pope associated the word jihad with holy war in what seems to be an exclusive manner. Jihad does NOT mean holy war. Although a jihad can be a holy war, the word simply means struggle. I have many Muslim friends and they have told me time and time again that a jihad can simply be a daily struggle in their walk with God. I don’t know if the Pope is aware of this or not, but I wish he had made this distinction. I also think the quote was a bad choice and ill informed on the part of the emperor who made it as well as the Pope who quoted it.
Mohammed did not bring evil. Yes, Islam did bring much evil in ITS NAME, it is not an evil religion. Almost all religions have done this. What faith ahs brought more evil and bloodshed with it than our Christian faith over the years in the name of God?
Yes, Mohammed fought wars, but most people fail to realize he was an extremely merciful war leader. Most people of the day would have just gone into a city and killed every thing in it. Mohammed deplored that, he only defeated his enemies, he did not slaughter them or destroy them completely.
Now, I find it strange that the Pope would talk about holy wars in relations to the Muslims and this quote from a 14th century emperor but make NO MENTION of the Crusades by the Church. If he is saying that war in the name fo faith is completely unnaceptable (and therefore we should not try to justify the Crusades) then he should have condemned the Church’s actions in the Crusades as well as those of the Muslims in his lecture. The fact that he did not and did not say that both sides were wrong, is completely hypocritical of the Pope to me.
It should also be mentioned that his lecture cannot be declared infallible (if it can than its ridiculous that the Holy Father can have infallibility in declaring what another faith believes). I’ve seen some of you folks on this board calling the Muslims evil and a false religion. I’ve seen some fo you people say the Muslims cause all the problems in the world with the bombings and the violence. I have many muslim friends and they and I would say those extremists are NOT MUSLIMS AT ALL. They are radicals and are NOT good muslims. If Christians were to do the things the extremists did, would we consider them to be Christians still if they persisted? NO.
I’ve seen some of you people defend the Pope just because he’s the Pope. He’s human and can sin and make a mistake. We should defend the Pope because he’s right, not try to find every which way to justify what he says just because he’s the Pope. He’s not infallible when it comes to what ever other religions believe, he’s only infallible when it comes to the teachings about our own Church. To that end, the Pope has made a mistake.
I find it insulting and astonishing that the Holy Father has not apologized in person to the Muslim community but rather he came short of apologizing for his words and only did this through a Vatican official. The Muslim community told him they would accept nothing less than a personal apology. And yet the Vatican goes and does the one thing the Muslim community will not accept. Were they not listening?
Now I say the Pope was wrong. You folks will probably say he’s right. Either way, whether he’s right or wrong, IT DOESN’T MATTER. He should still apologize even if it turns out he’s right. I’ll explain it with an example.
My Mother and I fight a lot. Now I’ll say things to her face that aren’t very nice about her but they are true. They get her very hurt and offended. Eventually I suck things up and apologize for my words because I want to heal relations with my mother, no matter if I’m right or wrong.
This is what the Holy Father should do, even if he’s right. He should just personally apologize if he wants to help heal the rift he’s just opened up.
However, despite all of this, I applaud the Pope for wanting to open up dialogue between the Church and Muslims concerning jihad as holy war. But if the Pope has misunderstood Islam and its concepts, I agree with the Muslim leaders that he should educate himself on the matter. Either way, I know that God will forgive him IF he has sinned. And I pray that he will do the right things and apologize personally to the Muslim community.
Thank you all for listening to what I’ve had to say. God Bless.