+Benedict’s Regensburg Vindication

Pope Benedict’s statement about Islam in Regensburg in 2006 was no gaffe, as the media like to portray it. He was stating some deep truths that proved too politically incorrect for many journalists to grasp without their heads exploding.

As George Weigel explains below, the rise of ISIS, the continued radicalization of some Muslims and the persecution of Christians in Muslim countries  spectacularly confirm the two points that Pope Benedict made in that speech.

Eight years later, the Regensburg Lecture looks a lot different. Indeed, those who actually read it in 2006 understood that, far from making a “gaffe,” Benedict XVI was exploring with scholarly precision two key questions, the answers to which would profoundly influence the civil war raging within Islam—a war whose outcome will determine whether 21st-century Islam is safe for its own adherents and safe for the world.

The first question was about religious freedom: Could Muslims find, within their own spiritual and intellectual resources, Islamic arguments for religious tolerance (including tolerance of those who convert to other faiths)? That desirable development, the pope suggested, might lead over time (meaning centuries) to a more complete Islamic theory of religious freedom.

The second question was about the structuring of Islamic societies: Could Muslims find, again from within their own spiritual and intellectual resources, Islamic arguments for distinguishing between religious and political authority in a just state? That equally desirable development might make Muslim societies more humane in themselves and less dangerous to their neighbors, especially if it were linked to an emerging Islamic case for religious tolerance.

Pope Benedict went on to suggest that inter-religious dialogue between Catholics and Muslims might focus on these two linked questions. The Catholic Church, the pope freely conceded, had had its own struggles developing a Catholic case for religious freedom in a constitutionally-governed polity in which the Church played a key role in civil society, but not directly in governance. But Catholicism had finally done so: not by surrendering to secular political philosophy, but by using what it had learned from political modernity in order to reach back into its own tradition, rediscover elements of its thinking about faith, religion, and society that had gotten lost over time, and develop its teaching about the just society for the future.

Was such a process of retrieval-and-development possible in Islam? That was the Big Question posed by Benedict XVI in the Regensburg Lecture. It is a tragedy of historic proportions that the question was, first, misunderstood, and then ignored. The results of that misunderstanding and that ignorance—and a lot of other misunderstanding and ignorance—are now on grisly display throughout the Middle East: in the decimation of ancient Christian communities; in barbarities that have shocked a seemingly-unshockable West, like the crucifixion and beheading of Christians; in tottering states; in the shattered hopes that the 21st- century Middle East might recover from its various cultural and political illnesses and find a path to a more humane future.

(…)

As for the conversation about Islam’s future that Benedict XVI proposed, well, it now seems rather unlikely. But if it’s to take place, Christian leaders must prepare the way by naming, forthrightly, the pathologies of Islamism and jihadism; by ending their ahistorical apologies for 20th-century colonialism (lamely imitating the worst of western academic blather about the Arab Islamic world); and by stating publicly that, when confronted by bloody-minded fanatics like those responsible for the reign of terror that has beset Syria and Iraq this summer, armed force, deployed prudently and purposefully by those with the will and the means to defend innocents, is morally justified. (Source)

Terror in Ottawa

Gripping account here.

Likely related to jihadists, although it hasn’t been confirmed yet.

I live downtown. Offices are still on lockdown. Sens game tonight is cancelled. Streets are currently very quiet, with extra police.

We’ll get through this. Don’t be afraid.

But do pray.

92% of Saudis support ISIS

This is disturbing if accurate.

According to the Saudi-owned Al-Hayat newspaper, in July 2014 “an opinion poll of Saudis [was] released on social networking sites, claiming that 92 percent of the target group believes that ‘IS conforms to the values of Islam and Islamic law.'” (Source)

Rally At Queen’s Park for Persecuted Christians

Hi, ​

Thousands and thousands of Christians are being killed, beheaded, driven out of their homes and churches or sold as sex slaves in Iraq, Syria, Nigeria, and other terrorist laden-ed states. ​

I ask you to pray on Saturday, September 13th, a Day of Mourning at Queens Park, Toronto.

I also ask you to sign a petition asking our government to do everything it can to rescue these precious brothers and sisters in the Lord. www.persecuted.ca ​

“Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a pastor who gave his life to save Jews from the evil of Hitler. ​

Prayer changes things. Jesus promises in Matthew 18:18 “Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Our collective prayer will bind these evil spirits and save lives. ​

Please send this email to your contact list and post on your Facebook page.

I hope to see you Saturday.

 

God bless.

Dr. Charles McVety

President

Canada Christian College and School of Graduate Theological Studies <charles@canadachristiancollege.com>

Save the Iraqi Christians Rally

Approximately 750 Christians and other concerned citizens filed on to Parliament Hill to show support for the Iraqi Christians and other minorities who are being persecuted and slaughtered in Iraq. A community of 1.5 million Christians has been reduced to 120,000 by some estimates. The crowd heard from a wide variety of Christian and Muslim leaders, as well as politicians and ordinary Canadians. A number of speakers gave impassioned pleas and called on the government of Canada to continue to provide material and military support to alleviate the suffering of innocent men, women and children in Iraq. The rally gave a tangible sign of unity and solidarity with our persecuted brothers and sisters in the Faith. Some speakers challenged Muslims to do more to combat extremist elements in their Faith communities. At the rally, we heard that the Government of Canada announced that it has committed another $1M to humanitarian aid to the situation in Iraq, as well as military intelligence.

Some video and pictures of the event are recorded below.

Please visit our Events page to view more pictures and video of the speeches and music!

The organizing committee of the Rally thanks all who came out and donated to cover the costs of the event. After costs are covered, all donations collected at the event will be passed on to the charitable organizations charged with helping our brothers and sisters in Iraq and throughout the Middle East.

God Bless You All.

In solidarity with the Persecuted Christians,

The Organizing Committee

Above: Crowd assembling before speeches started.

Above: Front shot of the crowd, just before the steps.

Above: Iraqi Canadians were well represented.

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Above: The Lebanese community was also well represented.

Above: Ottawa Businessman, Nick Shallal, on behalf of the Persecuted Christians of Iraq. He gave a rousing and impassioned plea for help.

Above: Fr. Fadi Atallah opening the rally in prayer.

Above: M.P. Paul Dewer just arrived from Iraq, encouraging the crowd to remain resolute in their support.

Above: Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa, reading a statement by Rabbi Bulka

Above: Glenn Pereira of St. Maurice Parish in Ottawa, leading other musicians in Christian music and hymns.

Above: Picture from the steps. Estimates range from 1500-2000 people participated in the rally to offer their support and encourage our Canadian government to do more.

Above: The Honourable Pierre Poilievre, P.C., M.P. offering words of encouragement. The crowd was very appreciative of the Conservative Government’s efforts to date in Iraq.

Above: Rev. Dr. Bailey of Parkdale United Church called Christians to rise above the hatred and violence of our opponents, and gave a strong and impressive speech to the crowd assembled.

Above: Imam Zijad of the South Nepean Muslim Community also offered words of encouragement.

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Above: Archbishop Terrence Prendergast offering a few words and reflections.

Above: Mr. Imad Zammar of the Cordova Centre, on behalf of Imam Mohamad Jebara

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Above: More pictures of the crowd and participants.

Above: Fr. Niaz Toma, an Iraqi Canadian Chaldean Priest from Hamilton gave a sublime and emotional address to the rally participants.

_______________________

Canadians to Rally for Persecuted Iraqi Christians & Other Minorities

Saturday September 6, 2014 (1 to 3 p.m.)

Between the Eternal Flame and the Centre Block

List Of Confirmed Speakers 

12:30 pm
• Music begins (St. Maurice Choir Band)
• signing of letters / petition

1:00 to 1:10 pm
• Carroll Rees & Keith Bell Co-chairs’ Opening Remarks

1:10 to 1:20
• O’Canada (C. Enright)
• Opening Prayer (Fr. Fadi Atallah, Syrian Christian Priest)

1:20 to 1:40
• Ottawa Restaurateur, Mr. Nick Shallal, on behalf of the persecuted
• Archbishop T. Prendergast (Ottawa Archdiocese) to speak and to read Rabbi Bulka’s Statement

1:40 to 1:45
• Hymns

1:45 to 2:10
• The Honourable Pierre Poilievre P.C., M.P. // Paul Dewer, M.P.
• Imam Zijad Delic, South Nepean Muslim Community
• Rev. Dr. Bailey, Parkdale United Church

2:10 to 2:15
• Hymns

2:15 to 2:35
• Carl Hetu, Catholic Near East Welfare Association
• Imam Mohamad Jebara – Cordova Centre (by his representative, Mr. Imad Zammar)
• Debbie Joduin, An Extraordinary Canadian, speaking on behalf of the ordinary Canadian

2:35 to 2:40
• Hymns

2:40 to 2:55
• Fr. Niaz Toma, Iraqi Canadian Chaldean Priest (day’s guest speaker)

2:55 to 3:00 p.m.
• Rev. Martin Malina …Evangelical Lutheran Church, Closing Prayer
• Closing remarks

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Media Advisory

Canadians to Rally for Persecuted Iraqi Christians & Other Minorities Saturday September 6, 2014 (1 to 3 p.m.)

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release – September 2, 2014

When: Saturday, September 6th, 2014 ( 1:00pm – 3:00pm )

Where: Parliament Hill –  Between the Eternal Flame and the Center Block

Why: To raise awareness of the plight of, and show our support for, Christians and other religious minorities experiencing inhumane persecution in Iraq at the hands of ISIS.

Rally Goals: To recognize the Canadian Government’s efforts to date in helping our unfortunate brothers and sisters in Iraq and to encourage it to do more by opening our doors wider to provide greater numbers with safe shelter.

To work more closely with the world community to see these daily barbarous atrocities permanently stopped.

And to give ordinary Canadians, like ourselves, an opportunity to come to the Hill to voice their concerns about this potential genocide.

In his August 7th statement, Cardinal Thomas Collins, Archbishop of Toronto, describes in graphic detail the plight currently facing these minority communities in Iraq – “scenes of residents force to flee their homes, stripped of their possessions, right down to the crosses around their necks, while others are murdered, martyrs literally laying down their lives for their faith”.

Carroll Rees, a spokesperson for the organizers, had this to add,  “We are a group of ordinary Canadians who felt helpless in the face of the atrocities occurring daily in Iraq and indeed throughout many parts of the Middle East. Our purpose in having this Rally was motivated by our belief that there are thousands of others just like us and we wanted to give them the opportunity to join with us to demand a stop to this barbarity. This is your chance to be heard; the Government, the Media,  Canadians at Large and indeed the World are listening …please do not keep silent any longer”.

The Rally’s principal speaker will be Father Niaz Toma an Iraqi Chaldean Catholic priest who has deep ties with Iraqi Canadian Communities across the country. The event will also include other notable speakers such as the Most Rev. Terrence Prendergast, SJ, Archbishop of Ottawa.

For more information, visit http://www.iraqchristians.com or contact Keith Bell at (613) 897-0316(613) 897-0316.

 

Pope Francis is only leader respected enough to end today’s wars

No.

We don’t need the Pope being the head of a cafeteria of new religions who are trying to broker a man-made peace.

We need the Pope to declare that the only way to peace is through the Prince of Peace who is Jesus Christ — and that includes to Muslims and Jews.

That is his job.  If he doesn’t want that job, he can always abdicate.  But he can’t be Pope of the United Nations and Pope of the Catholic Church. It’s one or the other.

 

Our Allegiance is to those who defend our brother and sisters in Christ — not to the Modern, Corrupt State

Our brothers and sisters are being slaughtered in Iraq and the Middle East.  Innocent men, women and children are being  killed in the most heinous ways possible simply because they profess to be Christian.

We see the gruesome images.  We read about the grizzly reports.  The facts are there and they are not disputable.

We also know that this is being committed by Islamists.  They have started a jihad. They’ve been telling us this for decades, but  the media, the political class, and even the Ecclesiastical establishment in the Church engage in the most foolish self-deception into believing this is not a religious war.

As the saying goes, you might not be interested in Jihad, but Jihad is interested in you.

We keep hearing about calls for more dialogue from men who have very soft hands and even softer heads.  The politicians and religion brokers at the USCCB get to keep their heads even though they are buried in the sand, but the Iraqi Christians are not so fortunate.  Do these men really think they can sit around the table with representatives of ISIS and come to some kind mutual understanding?  Seriously?

It’s so ridiculous that the reaction of the West in insisting that this is not about religion is more suited to an episode of Monty Python than it is about the real world. And we all know why we don’t want this to be about religion, because then we have to talk about religion and get into the messy business of whose religion is true and whose religion is false.

We have to make nasty declarations like “Muhammad was a false prophet and Islam is a Christian heresy”.  In order to engage in a religious war, you have to talk religion and get into the uncomfortable business of religious claims.

But we in the West don’t want to expose the error of Islam because that would destroy the relativism which forms the basis of our claims that “all religions are the same”.  It would also shake our comfortable agnosticism, atheism, and Christianty-lite.

So, we won’t go there and evil will continue to advance because of it.  Agnosticism has no defense against those who profess to have the truth…even though they don’t have it.  A poker player who bluffs will always be able to beat the player who never calls him on it.

You see, folks, the Islamists – for all their barbarity – believe in something that they are willing to die for.  We, in the West, no longer believe in anything worth dying for. Have you ever wondered, for instance, why the leftists and socialists are always opposing any war, but are the biggest supporters of abortion?  It’s because they hate sacrifice.

Islam is offering plenty of sacrifice for their cause. And we are offering none…except the blood of our martyrs.

The martyrs of Iraq are a rebuke to us in the West. By their blood, they are witnessing to us that there is a truth, and His name is Jesus Christ.  They won’t renounce Him, even if it costs them their lives in the most painful manner.

How dare we water down their witness by participating in the pretense that all religions are equal, and making their sacrifices virtually worthless.  They died because they would not renounce the name of the Lord.  Are we so pathetic that we won’t come to their aid in their time of need?

Here’s a message for Obama, Harper, and all of the leaders of the Western nations:  our allegiance to our countries is not absolute. It is conditional on you holding up basic ideals which were formed by our Christian heritage.  One of them is to defend the weak and uphold our right to worship and even exist as Christians.  If you bail on these basic principles, the modern democratic state as we all know it will collapse…because we won’t die defending something that is a rotten empty shell, but we will die to defend our Christian brothers and sisters and follow those who call us to it.

We don’t want war.  We respect and love all humanity. We value the dignity of every human person.

But if it’s the Jihad they want, it’s a new Crusade and Lepanto that they’re going to get, and Islam will be suppressed – so that,  when it’s all said and done, its crazies are kept on a short leash reserved for the dogs.

crusader

 

The Coming New World Order

Calgary brothers the latest Canadians identified as fighting for ISIS

So, it’s becoming clearer and clearer, as the weeks and months roll on here, that the Global Jihad has by-passed the old national alignment to fighting wars.  Islamicists pledge no allegiance to any country or State, except the Caliphate.  They are emigrating from every country on the Globe to get down with the Jihad and kill Christians and anyone else who stands in their way.

What is the West’s response to this?  It has been weak and ineffectual and there are no signs that things are going to change in any measurable way.  So while the Islamicists are steam-rolling through the Middle East and coming to America soon after thy start the “J” in Europe where their tactics have strong support from the Muslim communities there, the Christian populations are going to be decimated.

The question then becomes:  what are Catholics going to do about this?  If Islam’s allegiance is supra-national and they ignore the conventional allegiance to the State, then how can we possibly fight an organization like this?  The Secular State does not even concede that this is a religious war, so they will not come to our assistance.

Is it time for the Pope to call for a new Crusade?  Maybe not yet, but if things keep going with Barry O and the rest of the Neville Chamberlains of our world doing nothing, the time is coming where allegiance to our Faith comes before the allegiance to a lame duck democracy.

Absolute allegiance to the modern democratic state is not part of Catholic doctrine, but defending our brothers and sisters is.

If we have to ditch a democracy controlled by wicked and cowardly men, then we ditch it and go back to Monarchial rule.

The Catholic Church has never renounced the divine right of kings, and perhaps it’s a good thing to remember that.

Note to all of the secularists out there: if you cannot defend the right of Catholics to exist and worship, we have no reason to support the modern state.