Same for me. Pope Saint John Paul II, Pope Benedict, Pope Francis. All distinct from each other, but all serve God and apply the moral pillars of our faith when speaking to the world. I hear the criticisms about the papacy, how could it be one person could have so much jurisdiction to so many areas, to so many of the faithful of the world. Yet here is a perfect example of why the papacy is there, and why it needs to remain for the universal Church.
It’s about unity, not just unity in what we believe, not just equality between the different rites of the Church. It’s about a unity that allows the Pope to speak with one voice beyond the dogmas when souls, lives, injustices and persecution come to those who profess to be Christian and children of God.
Who will the politicians go to when extremists are slaughtering and displacing Christians? Fighting this extremism is like fighting an invisible enemy. On top of that, even the Muslim world is divided, split into two factions warring amongst themselves and then warring with Christians and Jews. These Muslim leaders who listen to the Holy Father are probably the peaceful ones, but the extremists do not recognize the authority of moderate peaceful Muslim leadership, and that’s why their condemnation falls of deaf ears, not that they’re insincere in wanting peace.
Someone is bankrolling and arming these killers. I certainly hope it is not us. Regardless, someone must truthfully report and tell the world where the arms and money is coming from. That’s the first step in cutting off the head off of this snake.
Prayers for the Holy Father, my Eastern Christian friends are so grateful he has kept the spotlight on the Christian plight in the Middle East. It should bother every Catholics conscience that those who profess and share our faith are living in terror, even when attending Mass. This will be at the top of my prayer list on Friday, that the Blessed Mother of our Lord intercede and bring our prayers to her beloved Son . If anyone will be granted the graces of peace and mercy for our Christian brethren , it is her.
Good job by the Pope, Muslim leadership really needs to stand up and speak against these acts, and if there are men out there who are condemning these acts they need to be heard b/c so far its not working.
The Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, the main Vatican office that deals with the Muslim world, said Tuesday that the forced expulsions and massacres of Christians and minority Yazidis shamed humanity and couldn’t be justified by any religion.
What document are you referring to? Why couldn’t this have been just an oral presentation in a briefing to the media?
No disrespect intended YTC, just curious as to how you came to the conclusion that there is some sort of document involved is all . . .
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 unspeakable criminal acts.
This Pontifical Council, together with all those engaged in interreligious dialogue, followers of all religions, and all men and women of good will, can only unambiguously denounce and condemn these practices which bring shame on humanity:
-the massacre of people on the sole basis of their religious affiliation;
-the despicable practice of beheading, crucifying and hanging bodies in public places;
-the choice imposed on Christians and Yezidis between conversion to Islam, payment of a tax (jizya) or forced exile;
-the forced expulsion of tens of thousands of people, including children, elderly, pregnant women and the sick;
-the abduction of girls and women belonging to the Yezidi and Christian communities as spoils of war (sabaya);
-the imposition of the barbaric practice of infibulation;
-the destruction of places of worship and Christian and Muslim burial places;
-the forced occupation or desecration of churches and monasteries;
-the removal of crucifixes and other Christian religious symbols as well as those of other religious communities;
-the destruction of a priceless Christian religious and cultural heritage;
-indiscriminate violence aimed at terrorizing people to force them to surrender or flee.
No cause, and certainly no religion, can justify such barbarity. This constitutes an extremely serious offense to humanity and to God who is the Creator, as Pope Francis has often reminded us. We cannot forget, however, that Christians and Muslims have lived together - it is true with ups and downs - over the centuries, building a culture of peaceful coexistence and civilization of which they are proud. Moreover, it is on this basis that, in recent years, dialogue between Christians and Muslims has continued and intensified.
The dramatic plight of Christians, Yezidis and other religious communities and ethnic minorities in Iraq requires a clear and courageous stance on the part of religious leaders, especially Muslims, as well as those engaged in interreligious dialogue and all people of good will. All must be unanimous in condemning unequivocally these crimes and in denouncing the use of religion to justify them. If not, what credibility will religions, their followers and their leaders have? What credibility can the interreligious dialogue that we have patiently pursued over recent years have?
Religious leaders are also called 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. While recalling the need for an ethical management of human societies, these same religious leaders must not fail to stress that the support, funding and arming of terrorism is morally reprehensible.
That said, the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue is grateful to all those who have already raised their voices to denounce terrorism, especially that which uses religion to justify it.
Let us therefore unite our voices with that of Pope Francis: "May the God of peace stir up in each one of us a genuine desire for dialogue and reconciliation. Violence is never defeated by violence. Violence is defeated by peace. "
I would like to see every western nation call on the nations of the middle east to take action against the savage actions of ISIS, and with persistence. They are neighbours of Iraq and Syria, and they should be the first responders coming to the assistance of those in peril. And, beyond this, for their own selfish reasons too, to knock ISIS out before it engulfs them too.
There are precedents for this, for instance in the first Gulf War, natons such as Qatar responded against Iraq.