Thursday, November 30, 2006

Popery on a wing and a prayer

It is difficult to conceive of a foreign visit more fraught with political and theological difficulties than the Pope’s sojourn in Turkey. He has so many bridges to build, it seems rather apt that one of his titles is Pontifex Maximus. Just where is His Holiness supposed to start? With an apology for his Regensburg address? Regret at the affront to Islam? Positive noises towards Turkish accession to the European Union of Christendom? Or with his original agenda of trying to repair the millennium-old split with the Orthodox East?

In September the Pope quoted a 14th century Byzantine emperor who was persuaded that Mohammed had brought nothing but evil and inhumanity to the world. Now he is quoting the 11th century Pope Gregory VII, who spoke of the charity that Christians and Muslims owe to one another, which is ‘an illustration of the fraternal respect with which Christians and Muslims can work together’. Before his arrival, protesters in Istanbul carried signs saying ‘Ignorant and sneaky Pope, don't come’ and ‘Jesus is not the son of God, he is a prophet of Islam’. In order to dispel his reputation for Islamophobia, he immediately asserted that ‘Christians and Muslims belong to the family of those who believe in the one God’, and he assured Turkey's chief Islamic cleric, Ali Bardokoglu, that he desires ‘authentic dialogue’ (ie one that is rational and critical) between Christians and Muslims based on ‘mutual esteem and respect’ (ie, stop killing us and bombing our buildings). In an apparent U-turn, he expressed support for Turkey in its quest to join the European Union. As Cardinal Ratzinger, he was persuaded of Turkey’s ‘permanent contrast’ to Europe, and asserted that it was destined to remain a Middle Eastern country. Now, however, he ‘views positively and encourages the path of dialogue, of Turkey's getting closer to and entering Europe on the basis of common values and principles’.

Could it be that His Holiness was able to make such overtures because knew that the EU was about to deal a heavy if not fatal blow to Turkey’s EU aspirations? The Commission has decided to halt negotiations until Turkey opens its ports to Cyprus. Turkey will only accept customs union with Cyprus if the EU eases its embargo on the Turkish-controlled north of the Mediterranean island. Therefore eight negotiating chapters have been closed - talks on the free movement of goods, right of establishment, financial services, agriculture, fisheries, transport, external relations and customs union. With the Pope in Turkey, this is a strangely-timed pronouncement of an acutely political decision. However, St Anthony of England may be about to enter the fray. He said: ‘Just at the moment to send an adverse signal to Turkey I think would be a serious mistake for Europe long-term’. Turkey has every right to be confounded by these mixed messages.

Of course, the Pope’s original reason for visiting was to meet Patriarch Bartholomew – ‘first among equals’ of the leaders of the Orthodox Christian churches. The Catholic-Orthodox relationship has also been fraught with difficulty, even before the two churches split nearly 1,000 years ago. Catholicism was dominant in the ‘Latin’ West; Orthodoxy in the Greek-speaking East. Over the centuries, political, cultural and theological differences widened to the point where the two Churches formally split in 1054. There have been attempts at reconciliation, but significant obstacles remain. One is the status of the Pope - seen by Catholics as the final arbiter of theological and moral truth. For the Orthodox churches, such authority derives from the first Seven Councils of the Church - the last of which occurred in AD 787 - whose rulings cannot be altered. Other differences concern the filioque and the nature of the Trinity, the relationship between science and Faith, whether God can ever be fully understood, or the existence - or otherwise - of Purgatory.

His Holiness tried to resolve the Reformation divisions over a 20-minute cup of tea with the Archbishop of Canterbury. Cranmer thinks that three days in Turkey is just as manifestly inadequate to address any of these issues in the required depth.

28 Comments:

Anonymous Voyager said...

Pope Gregory VII, who spoke of the charity that Christians and Muslims owe to one another

I though Pope Gregory spent most of his time involved with the Teutons and less with the Mohammedans.............and the Emperor had first hand experience of Muslim hospitality having been a prisoner..........wasn't it also the fact the divisions within the Byzantine Court had factions cooperating with Islam to breach the walls ?

Maybe the Pope simply wishes to have a convocation where the different Christian Churches consult rather than a Staff and Line relationship ?

If Privy Councillors can meet without one being subordinate to the other, why cannot Christian primates meet and discuss ?

30 November 2006 at 10:20  
Anonymous bob said...

It would seem, Cranmer, that despite having died some time ago you seemed to have picked up the contempory obsession with quick fix solutions. I don't think that the Pope was attempting immediate reconciliation with either Anglicanism or Orthodoxy. I think the statements he made before and during these meetings were fairly clear on that. I think these meetings and trips are part of a process, not an instant solution in themselves.

On the issue of the EU, the Daily Telegraph was reporting yesterday that the Pope had been ambushed into making a statement of support for Turkey joining the EU. So it would seem there's a range of opinion on that issue.

I think your distaste for all things Catholic and Pontifical may be at the heart of your concerns.

30 November 2006 at 10:52  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The least that can be said about the new pope is that he is rather more senile and active than the last one.. as for quoting byzantine to the muslims they deserved that one.. they promote terrorist first and then expect to be looked at as humanitarians.. bloody lunatics them lot are.. And as far reconcilation between the various proponents of Jesus are concerned.. it just will not occur because it would mean a sacrifice of power.. and there are way too many aspirants waiting to take over from the reigning heads to let an "injustice" such as this to occur.
good blog by the way cranmer.. have linked to you.. rest assured I shall be here on a daily basis henceforth..

30 November 2006 at 11:33  
Anonymous Voyager said...

about the new pope is that he is rather more senile and active than the last one.. as for quoting byzantine to the muslims they deserved that one.

educated in glibness I see.............well it is a failure of modern times

30 November 2006 at 12:08  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Tejus Ramakrishnan,

His Grace welcomes you to his august blog, and looks forward to manifestations of your undoubted intelligence and erudition.

Mr Bob,

His Grace is a little aggrieved by your curt summary of his theological and philosophical learning as 'distaste for all things Catholic and Pontifical'. This is simply not true, indeed, if one reads the last paragraph of the post below, His Grace is at pains to stress the richness and cumulative wisdom that may be found within Catholicism. His Grace is too long in the tooth to believe in 'quick fix' solutions. He is, however, a little insulted that the Archbishop of Canterbury, Primate and Prince of the Church, is afforded a mere 20 minutes with His Holiness. It has more than a whiff of being crammed into a diary than with any expression or expectation of serious theological reflection.

30 November 2006 at 12:12  
Anonymous Ulster Man said...

Cranmer, I don't think either the Catholic/Orthodox split or the Reformation split are going to be fixed over afternoon tea, but neither do I share your optimism that more time devoted would provide the answers. What are we working towards? A Protestant pope? A Catholic King of England (more likely!), a Muslim vicar? A Hindu Imam? No amount of dialogue is going to produce agreement, so the Orthodox are likely to tell the Pope just where he can stick his infallibility, just like we do here.

30 November 2006 at 17:33  
Anonymous Voyager said...

A Protestant pope? A Catholic King of England (more likely!), a Muslim vicar? A Hindu Imam?

My you do move in limited orbits..........it is all to do with position and title in your commentary. Frankly looking forward I think the notion of England or a King are hardly assumptions I can hold with any conviction as things currently stand.........Pope Benedict has an especial interest in building much closer links with Judaism because of The Olive Tree, I hardly think that is because he wants Jews to acknowledge the supremacy of The New Testament.............

I do not see the Christian Churches in Western Europe as paramount expressions of Christianity and think it interesting to look at those disciples that went east not west - the Chaldean Church, the Orthodox Church, the Coptic Church, the Byzantine Church................I do not understand why 1520 should be seen as the foundation of the Christian Church which existed long before 1054...............

There is a narrowness in your perspective Ulster Man which is central to your denomination but perhaps puts you on a very narrow Calvinist track when considering that branch of Judaism developed by Jesus and Saul

30 November 2006 at 17:51  
Blogger istanbultory said...

Actually, the Pope's apparent change of heart on Turkey and the EU appeared to weaken somewhat today. The pontiff said respect for religious freedom must be a criterion for membership in the EU, which must ensure that its members respect the rights of their religious minorities.He was referring, of course, to the patriarchate's complaints of restrictions imposed on it by the Turkish government. That won't have gone down well with his hosts...

30 November 2006 at 18:51  
Anonymous Bob said...

I apologise, Cranmer, for having aggrieved you with my curtness. I am reading your posts through the sensitivities of my own Catholic hermeneutic, and, of course, my responses are influenced accordingly. However, given that you are an intelligent and erudite person, you no doubt choose your words with care and precision. So when I consulted my New Oxford Dictionary of English I was informed that "popery" is a derogatory term.

I freely admit to lacking your intelligence, but I am unaware of where exactly you have been at pains to stress the richness and cumulative wisdom that may be found within Catholicism.

As for a 20 minute visit with the Archbishop of Canterbury, I imagine it might have something to do with the reality that any unity with Catholicism and Anglicanism is at this stage virtually nil, whereas a unity with Orthodoxy is, at least, theoretically possible. I also must admit to finding it somewhat amusing that you are insulted that the Archbishop received only a 20 minute audience, given that in your post entitled "The Pope and Archbishop show" you felt patronised by the outcome of the meeting before wondering why they had bothered at all.

30 November 2006 at 19:17  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Actually, the Pope's apparent change of heart on Turkey and the EU appeared to weaken somewhat today.

Erdogan

Der türkische Premier überraschte seine Landsleute und Europa mit der Aussage, der Papst wünsche der Türkei den EU-Beitritt. Doch Erdogan hat den heiligen Vater wohl ziemlich eigenwillig interpretiert. In CDU und CSU atmet man auf - und warnt die Türkei vor der "Methode Erdogan".


It seems that Erdogan is a man of low moral standards and that the Pope expressed his satisafction that Turkey was closer to "Europe" but said nothing about the EU because as his spokesman Federico Lombardi pointed out the Pope had neither the power nor any desire to be involved in such a complex issue as EU negotiations.



Federico Lombardi äußerte sich per Katholischer Nachrichtenagentur: "Der Vatikan hat nicht die Macht und nicht die besondere politische Aufgabe, in einer so fest umrissenen Angelegenheit wie einem EU-Beitritt zu intervenieren und er strebt dies auch nicht an." Allerdings betrachte er die Annäherung der Türkei an Europa als positiv und ermutige diesen Weg, so Lombardi.

30 November 2006 at 19:30  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Bob,

His Grace exhorts you to peceive his missives beyond the confines of your particular hermeneutic, and embrace the lateral and indirect, not to mention the humorous

As for Popery being a derogatory term, Protestant was also once a Catholic term of derision. These things mutate. The OED is itself confined by its editorship, and only refers to words by the use of other words. The definition of these words is only discovered by consulting the source seeking to bring elucidation. Hermeneutic circles are epistemological labyrinths.

His Grace is not infallible, but he perceives no contradiction between the two posts you mention. His plea is that genuine theological dialogue should be reflective and prolonged; not tea and cake with a ballet of photo-opportunities. Twenty minutes could only yield simply the trite conclusions His Grace has mentioned. Months of genuine attempts at profound communion is likely to yield something rather more enduring and meaningful. After twenty minutes, what was so important that His Holiness had to break off the plea of the Lord 'that they may be one'?

30 November 2006 at 19:36  
Anonymous bob said...

I shall endeavour to move beyond my limitations. I shall take it, then, from your aggrieved state at my comments that you are a genuine supporter of all things Catholic, especially as you are also devoted to the Lord's plea "that they may be one." I am also happily informed that you were using popery in the most positive sense of the word.

I would like to inform you, however, even though you are no doubt already aware, of the existence of ARCIC, which carries out the many months of genuine attempts at profound communion for which you called. As for the shortness of the visit, I am unable to give a full account of Pope Benedict's diary but as head of the Catholic Church, as well as being a head of state, I would imagine he would have quite a full schedule to fulfil. It might also be worth pointing out that the Archbishop of Canterbury is not on equal terms with the Pope in ecclesiastical terms, given that he is not head of the Church of England. It might, therefore, have merited a longer meeting had Queen Elizabeth come along instead, as then it would have been a true meeting of equals, heads of Churches and heads of state. However, I am given to understand that Her Majesty has quite a full diary, persumably for many of the same reasons that Pope Benedict also does.

30 November 2006 at 20:14  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Bob,

Of course His Grace supports all things catholic (lower case 'c'), if only because he recites the Nicene Creed. The Lord's plea 'that they may be one' is scriptural, which is not the private preserve of Catholicism. The notion of Roman Catholicism is, in any case, a manifest oxymoron.

Thank you for confirming that His Holiness is a Head of State and a politician, which he denied in Turkey.

Her Majesty is Supreme Governor of the Church of England; she is not a theologian. The governance of the Anglican communion is a world apart from Rome, and Her Majesty has no direct parity with the Pope. It is not unreasonable that Her Majesty would be happy to leave theology to the theologians.

And indeed His Grace is more than familiar with ARCIC, and is mindful that each and every one of its conclusions to date has been towards the Roman interpretation of everything doctrinal. Strange that...

30 November 2006 at 21:18  
Anonymous bob said...

The oxymoron was invented by members of the Reformed tradition so perhaps you should point it out to them as well.

The Pope is indeed a head of state, but not a politician, just as Queen Elizabeth is a head of state and not a politician. I very much doubt he denied he was a head of state. Perhaps the text you read was mistranslated, just as the text you often quote from the EPP which said the EU constitution is a "holy text" was mistranslated, as the term "holy text" does not appear within the text of that speech.

Perhaps if her Majesty was a theologian, then the Anglican communion might not be in the state of disarray it is currently finds itself in.

Finally, one could conclude that if the findings of ARCIC lean towards the Catholic position, it might be because it's the correct position.

30 November 2006 at 21:45  
Anonymous Colin said...

Children, come in and have a cup of tea before continuing to solve the most important problems of the world which naturally are religious in nature. I can't wait to see your solutions. The tea will get cold. With or without milk?

While we are all sitting together and drinking a nice cup of tea, is it permitted to ask my good old friend Voyager (formerly Rick, I have been told), why his welcome greetings to Tejus Ramakrishnan are showing lack of hospitality as expressed in your unfriendly remark educated in glibness I see?

'A man never describes his own character so clearly as when he describes that of another's.' - JP Ritcher according to the 6th Favorite Quotes of Mr. Ramakrishnan. Certainly, he isn't afraid of losing his intellectual supremacy on this blog, is he?

Because Tejus Ramakrishnan is not only young and handsome but also a highly educated man who currently studies Economics, Business & Law at the University of Buckingham. Prior to this he was a student of Jurisprudence at Cardiff University in Wales. Furthermore, he is a situationalist, an utilitarian, and believes in epicurianism. And if this weren't enough, he is also able to speak Latin. His motto is Adsum advocatus argumentum ab absurdo, a contrario, a fortiori, a mari usque ad mare enim amor patriae. Indeed, no further evidence of intelligence and erudition is needed.

Finally, the fact that he has read "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand makes me hopeful that one day he might be willing to explain her message to me and us without that I have to read her book myself.

1 December 2006 at 00:32  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cranmer:
thankyou...

voyager:
may i ask how does one get "educated in glibness?" a salesman may show glibness but in reference to the former I must say that it is the first I have heard of it..

Colin:
I shall take it that this your way of welcoming me.. thank you.. as for Ayn Rand if you want to sum it up in a line she essentially says that "if there is nothing in it for me, I will not do it. I will only do what I wish to out of my own free will." Yet if it is true that you have never read it, it is well worth reading.

1 December 2006 at 01:53  
Anonymous Voyager said...

It might also be worth pointing out that the Archbishop of Canterbury is not on equal terms with the Pope in ecclesiastical terms, given that he is not head of the Church of England

The Archbishop of Canterbury IS the theological Head of the Church of England and has his own bailiwick in those areas of England not covered by the Archbishopric of York. The Pope may readily discuss theological matters with the Archbishop but on governmental matters should address his concerns to the British Ambassador to The Vatican, just as his predecessor negotiated the Concordat with Mussolini and not The Bishop of Rome (which might have caused an outbreak of schizophrenia)

The Monarch is Supreme Governor not Theological Head just as the title Bishop of Rome reflected the nature of Roman Catholicism as the State Church of The Roman Empire subservient to The Emperor.............I did not think Constantine saw himself as subservient to the Pontifex Maximus

1 December 2006 at 07:23  
Anonymous Voyager said...

The least that can be said about the new pope is that he is rather more senile and active than the last one.

as for quoting byzantine to the muslims they deserved that one.. they promote terrorist first and then expect to be looked at as humanitarians.. bloody lunatics them lot are..

And as far reconcilation between the various proponents of Jesus are concerned.. it just will not occur because it would mean a sacrifice of power..



Well Colin, these three statements set out to insult rather than inform. They are the unsubstantiated assertions of one inebriated with the need to make slick comments rather than informed debate.

You are too easily impressed Colin, one of the failures of cut-and-paste academia as currently constituted is a gross inability to engage beyond solipsism which is why glibness is the most accurate and benign rendition of the example above.

The gratuitous insult to a) The Pope as a very highly educated man with more than a 2-year degree course in Buckingham - and

b) the insult to Muslims in such a derogatory and generalised fashion that the author must be pleased Nick Griffin was absolved, but might watch his own BBC appearances when surreptitiously filmed - and

c) between the various proponents of Jesus is a very glib and condescending attitude towards Christians which probably qualifies the author with some publicly-funded position of politically-correct certitude, and satisfies the atheistic proclivities of yourself Colin.

1 December 2006 at 07:35  
Anonymous Voyager said...

KIS

Now let's welcome Tejus to our country where it is possible to be critical of Hindus, and Buddhists, and Sikhs, and not only Muslims, Atheists, and Christians.........which i am sure he finds more liberating than India.

However, bursting into a room where people are in discussion to launch broadsides against Christians and Muslims does lead people to wonder if ill-manners are taught quite so expensively in India and Cardiff, not to mention Buckingham. Perhaps it is youthful exuberance as Jeremy Hanley once put it, but gratuitous insults towards Muslims and Christians in a foreign land are not conducive to reasoned discussion

1 December 2006 at 07:47  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

voyager..
i see no reason for you get so upset especially when you yourself advocate reasoned and rational discussion..
as to finding that old school class site of mine.. i have to thank you.. i even forgot that it did exist.. as to your allegations of me not conducting informed debate I must tell you that you are wrong since.. I made a statement and you made a retort, so the debate is just begining.. and will last awhile if your current replies are to be any indication.. now as to my schooling.. whether expensive or otherwise is not something I give much thought to.. as for your idea that I criticize other religions, well I am guilty, but my reasons for this I am willing to share in an "informed debate" as you like to call it... however as for your accusation of cut and paste academia I am insulted for though I may be full of "youthful exuberance" to use another one of your opinions, I certainly take pride about being well read and hence can analyse for myself what I believe rather than merely repeat what someone else has previously said..Maybe I was tad harsh towards the muslims in my comment but I have no recollection whatsoever of insulting the christians.. and if you expect me to accept your view that there are no powerseekers in the church whatever branch of it, then it is you i believe who should reanalyze your views and take a reality check.. I am no supporter of Nick Griffin but nonetheless as Voltaire once said " I may not agree with what you say, but to the death I shall defend your right to say it." I hope that you are able to see that I bear you no ill-will and welcome further argument from your side for it is always pleasurable to engage in debate with someone who can qualify their views rather than most of mundane idiots one tends to meet university.. and buckingham university in fact has a better teaching system than every other college but maybe a handfull and though one may not believe that easily one must experience it to realize it.. and as for this being more liverating than India, you are not entirely right or wrong.. afterall one must realize that every institution of society can and should be questioned in the pursuit of knowledge for as Juvenal said "Quis Custodiet Ipos Custodes?" which translated reads "Who Guards the Guardians?".. and please do not take the translation as an insult, i merely translated it for those who may not have a working knowledge of latin..
I hope to hear soon as to what the shortcoming in this reply of mine was.. Till then

1 December 2006 at 08:28  
Anonymous Voyager said...

OK...Tejus now we have the ground rules..........it was as I said rather like someone bursting into a seminar and provoking the particpants. Now you have posted a more elaborated comment we can move forward and park that issue in a corner.

I look forward to your erudite contributions...........you might want to look up Jeremy Hanley and that comment about "youthful exuberance" or ask some of the older Conservatives............

Anyway, tabula rasa............we can start new

1 December 2006 at 08:46  
Blogger Cranmer said...

How good and pleasant it is when brothers come together in harmony.

1 December 2006 at 08:56  
Anonymous vikki said...

His Grace might want to start a blog for oldies......being young appears to be a________________We forget wisdom and certain skills mostly come with age and experience....we are too impatient with our youths.....

1 December 2006 at 10:32  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

rexcellent.. afresh we can now start since we have introduced ourselves in a fair if not eloquent manner.. I shall enjoy these little debates if this was but a sample.. and as regards(tabula rasa* - I have written a paper somewhat stealing from aristotle the ideas and I shall be putting it up on my blog about how everything we believe in has been influenced by society and how the mind which has not been influenced much like the soul, has a somewhat different perspective regards good and bad).. till then..

1 December 2006 at 10:37  
Blogger Laban said...

You may care to read a first-hand account of the Catholic/Orthodox meeting at Brussels Journal

http://www.brusselsjournal.com/node/1714

"Finally, it comes time for Communion. My father asks me if I will go, and I reply that I probably should not. He urges me to, and I give in. Now, we file forward, toward the Ecumenical Patriarch His All-Holiness Bartholomew I, holder of the last office of the Eastern Empire, who gives us the Body of Christ. Mere feet away, Benedict XVI sits on the Papal throne, looking down upon us supplicants. I am overcome and cannot glance toward him. Behind me, others have more courage: they break from the line, rush forward, and kiss Benedict’s hand. He is calm and gentle. He smiles and clasps their hands, saying a few words in German and English, before urging them to go receive the Eucharist. It is profoundly moving too see these devout Orthodox who have come to pay homage to the bishop of the New Roman, and who are so overwhelmed with the presence and love of the bishop of the Rome that they must give him the same. The small space encompasses a universe, and we are at its center.

Bartholomew ascends to the iconostasis and welcomes Benedict in Greek. Benedict, aware of the cameras surrounding him, replies in English. We must, he says, recall Europe to its Christian heritage before it is too late – and we must do it together. Then they emerge into the cold sunlight of a cold day. They ascend to a balcony overlooking the courtyard where we gather in expectation. They speak briefly. And then, they clasp hands, Pope and Patriarch, smile and raise their arms together. Tears come to my eyes, and I am shocked to see several media personnel crying openly. For an instant, the Church is one. For a shadow of a second, the dreams of Christendom are again real."


"We must, he says, recall Europe to its Christian heritage before it is too late – and we must do it together".

Arguing about the Reformation butters no parsnips in these times. If Christians don't hang together ...

2 December 2006 at 11:19  
Anonymous Colin said...

Wonderful, Tejus, welcome again. It is a pleasure to read your debate with Voyager. Both of you were pretty convincing. Therefore, I expect that your participation will make this blog even more interesting than it already is.

2 December 2006 at 11:29  
Anonymous Colin said...

"Christian heritage ... we must do it together"

I am wondering if His Grace wouldn't be rather sceptical about this aim and might even interpret is as a confirmation of his suspicion that the catholic church has the evil intention to expand its power.

2 December 2006 at 11:37  
Anonymous Voyager said...

"Christian heritage ... we must do it together"

I would not impute that to His Grace, even he found his Calvinist instincts tempered a King's reluctance to ignore his Catholic heritage; ex-Communicant or not Henry VIII lived and died a Roman Catholic and the Anglican Church retained the diocesan trappings and parish structure, and until 1552, even the Missal of the Catholic Sacrament.

Of all the countries in Europe, Britain is the most quixotic for the Church of Rome, and Germany the most secularised.........I think it is Christianity Pope Benedict is interested in more than simple Catholicism, although from his writings I do believe he sees the flame of orthodoxy burning brighter in the Catholic Church today than the somewhat debased Protestant Churches of North America.

Someone once pointed out that the demarcation line represented by The Iron Curtain was essentially that of Orthodox Christianity with Catholicism being present at the periphery in Poland and Western Ukraine (formerly Poland) and where Croatia met Serbia and bordered the far reaches of Ottoman Kosovo.

If John Paul II was instrumental in the political collapse of the CMEA reagion through his aid to Solidarnosc; then this Pope wishes to complete the recovery of Europe by fusing Roman Catholicism and Orthodox Christianity onto a common spine so that it then links to Judaism and the Olive Tree is completed.

To be perfectly frank I think he has put the Western European Church on the back-burner in the time he has available, and wants to bring Chaldean Christians persecuted in Iraq and in Lebanon into a union with a strengthened Christian Church which has as its emphasis Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Happiness over the rather trivial obsessions of North American and Western European Churches.

When you look at The Barnabas Fund and the persecution of Christians in the world and how little the Church of England seems to care, it is worth noting that Bradford Cathedral will have Christmas carols sung in Urdu by Pakistani Christians hoping for higher profile attention to the suffering of Christians with non-white skins

2 December 2006 at 11:56  

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