Catholic interfaith efforts toward Muslims: naive, self-defeating, suicidal?

IslamMoon

…New York’s Timothy Cardinal Dolan paid a visit last summer to the Albanian Islamic Cultural Center in Tompkinsville on Staten Island, where he met with a large group of Muslim leaders. As is often the case when Catholic prelates meet with Muslims, his theme was the common ground shared by the two faiths. Cardinal Dolan told his Islamic audience, “You love God, we love God, and he is the same God,” and he thanked them “for making me feel like a friend and a member of a family.” He went on to tell them how much they share in common with Catholics: “Your love of marriage and family, your love of children and babies, your love of freedom — religious freedom particularly — your defense of life, your desire for harmony and unity and your care for others, your care for God’s creation and your care for those who are in need.”

Perhaps this is true of the Muslims of Tompkinsville, but unfortunately the cardinal’s words will be taken as an endorsement of Islam in general. I say “unfortunately” because what he says about the common values and beliefs of Muslims and Catholics is highly misleading.

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Lumen Gentium states that Muslims “profess to hold the faith of Abraham” but does not assert that they actually do.

IslamMoon

…I’d like to focus here on the fact that the Church’s “position” on Islam remains a stumbling block for countless Catholics. In other words, a great many Catholics refuse to come to grips with the violent, misogynist side of Islam because they believe that the Church has spoken, and has spoken to the effect that Islam is a spiritual kin. Therefore, they reason, the matter is closed.

Consider an online debate that appeared this summer in Catholic Answers Forum about Cardinal Dolan’s visit to a mosque in New York. The debate centered around the Cardinal’s statement “You love God, we love God, and he is the same God”—a statement, in short, which seemed to echo the Catholic Catechism. The most interesting aspect of the month-long thread was that those who argued that Allah is the same God that Christians worship relied almost exclusively on arguments from authority. Here is a sample:

  • “It is dogma that Catholics and Muslims worship the same God.”
  • “He [Cardinal Dolan] has the grace of Teaching Authority. Unless you are a bishop, you do not.”
  • “You are discrediting Vatican II.”
  • “One either accepts Her teaching authority, or one does not.”
  • “This is not up for grabs.”

After plowing through dozens of similar propositions, along with numerous citations of the relevant passage in the Catechism, it was difficult for me to avoid the conclusion that forum participants were relying on the argument from authority because it was the only argument they had.

The trouble with the argument from authority in regard to Islam is fourfold.

Ohio Mom Teams-up With TMLC to Remove Islamic Proselytizing Video from 7th Grade History Class

The Olmsted Falls City School District, located in Olmsted Falls, Ohio has agreed to remove the video “30 Days: Muslim and America” from the 7th grade World History Curriculum.  The action was taken to avoid a constitutional challenge by the Thomas More Law Center (TMLC), a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, which filed a series of requests for public records concerning the video on behalf of Jenny McKeigue, a mother of three children who attend schools within the district.

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Video – Three (Real) Things About Islam

 

Islam as a Christian Heresy: 8 Quotes from St. John Damascene A.D. 749

In his passage on Concerning Heresies, his section on the superstition of the Ishmaelites is considerably longer than most. One reason for this attention could be his prolonged battles against iconoclasm, in which the influence of Islam was a significant factor. The following are selected sections from his passage on Islam.

1. Muhammed devised his own heresy

“There is also the superstition of the Ishmaelites which to this day prevails and keeps people in error, being a forerunner of the Antichrist. They are descended from Ishmael, [who] was born to Abraham of Agar, and for this reason they are called both Agarenes and Ishmaelites… From that time to the present a false prophet named Mohammed has appeared in their midst. This man, after having chanced upon the Old and New Testaments and likewise, it seems, having conversed with an Arian monk, devised his own heresy. Then, having insinuated himself into the good graces of the people by a show of seeming piety, he gave out that a certain book had been sent down to him from heaven. He had set down some ridiculous compositions in this book of his and he gave it to them as an object of veneration.”

2. Christ’s shadow was crucified

“He says that there is one God, creator of all things, who has neither been begotten nor has begotten. He says that the Christ is the Word of God and His Spirit, but a creature and a servant, and that He was begotten, without seed, of Mary the sister of Moses and Aaron. For, he says, the Word and God and the Spirit entered into Mary and she brought forth Jesus, who was a prophet and servant of God. And he says that the Jews wanted to crucify Him in violation of the law, and that they seized His shadow and crucified this. But the Christ Himself was not crucified, he says, nor did He die, for God out of His love for Him took Him to Himself into heaven.”

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Muslim’s frustration with Egyptian government leads to the widespread destruction of Christian churches and institutions

A wave of devastating violence swept through Egypt Wednesday as the government attempted to disband the supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi from their sit-ins.  According to the Associated Press,638 people have now been confirmed killed, and nearly 4,000 are injured.

The fighting is far from limited to the Islamists and the military, however. Since Wednesday’s violence began, there have also been a wave of attacks on churches and Christian institutions.

47 churches and counting…

See the list

Islam: Firmly rooted in a twisted version of the Old Testament and the Mosaic Law.

IslamMoon

The teachings of Islam are set forth in the Qur’an (Koran), which is divided into 114 chapters or surahs. These are supplemented by hadith, “sayings,” a record of the actions and utterances of Muhammad, which at first were transmitted by oral tradition and later written down.

The Qur’an and hadith form the basis of the shari’a, the Holy Law, which lies at the foundation of the Islamic state, and which constitutes a rich body of legislation covering all aspects of public and private life.

Less clearly defined is the ijam, which may roughly be described as “consensus” and refers to the common opinion of the believers regarding particular interpretations of Islamic teaching. This in turn is guided by the Sunna, or accepted “tradition.”

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Comparing the Fundamental Beliefs of Christians and Muslims

biblekoran

Bible vs Quran

Compiled by Islam101.com. This is a Muslim apologetics site, so be ready to deal with some very strange interpretations of Christian beliefs and concepts.

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