2010 September 26
by Lisa Graas
Read the original post here…
Though the Crusades were fought centuries ago and are rarely, if ever, mentioned in Catholic classrooms, Muslims today who want Jihad continue to flaunt them in vengeful tones and wallow in hatred for Catholicism. So it was when Pope Benedict XVI visited the United Kingdom and was met on his itinerary by a group of angry Islamists urging for his death and calling him “responsible” for the Crusades.
Muslim demonstrators shouted “Pope Benedict, you will pay, Islam is on its way”, “Sharia is on its way”, “Justice is on its way” (a lot is coming our way, it seems) and threatened that Sharia would be “declared” against all who insult Muhammad. They shouted to the Pope, “Watch your back,” swore that he will “burn in hell” and claimed that he “deserves the death penalty.”
After a short speech by an MAC spokesman, Abu Rayah, explaining that while they were “not against one hillbilly trying to burn the Koran, we are against the constitution that attacks Muslims every day”, the US flag was set alight. Some 50 protesters chanted: “Democracy, you will burn.”
At the far end of the square, a very different spectacle was taking place. Under a wooden pavilion bearing the inscription “Peace is the price we pay for love”, in the British Memorial Garden grown after 9/11, a steady stream of people came to lay flowers and wreaths. Some were from the families of the 67 British people killed nine years ago. Others, such as John Watts, came to pay respects. Now 60, he lost his wife shortly after the towers fell: 11 September 2001 was his last wedding anniversary. His memories of it, like those of so many with no direct connection to the attack, are overwhelmed by what happened that day.
Ambassadors of genuine peace in the world, no matter their creed or station in life, are not recognized as such by those who hold to the core teachings of Islam, a so-called “religion of peace“, where “peace” is defined as living in “submission“.
The “meeting” of Pope Benedict XVI and Anjem Choudary on the streets of London, though the Pope was apparently oblivious to it, is most noteworthy because in it we see the personification of the two largest religions that are contradictory at their core. On the one hand, we have the Pope who stands as “Vicarius Christi“, the “Vicar of Christ” or “servant overseer” of Christianity to 1.147 billion Catholics in the world. To them, the Pope is the representative of the core teachings of the Christian Faith which are, if nothing else, peaceful in nature. On the other hand, Anjem Choudary is rightly characterized as one who both knows and professes the core teachings of Islam, a religion that recently surpassed Catholicism in membership and claims about 1.27 billion members worldwide.
Though all Muslims do not hold to Choudary’s views, only the blind or ignorant could sincerely claim that he misunderstands what Islam teaches. At the same time, though all Catholics do not hold strictly to the catechism, it is clear to all but the blind or ignorant that it, at minimum, professes a peaceful message and one that the Pope consistently promulgates as the Bishop of Rome.
Since devout Muslims refuse to forget the Crusades and are shouting death threats to the Pope, perhaps it is time to bring this chapter of Catholic/Muslim history back into the Catholic classroom. Catholic students may do well to understand what the Crusades were really about from Catholic history, not the revised version currently popular thanks to leftist apologists for Islam. We have not forgotten, as a Church, that the Crusades were defensive wars in response to Muslim atrocities which occurred after Islamists conquered what had been Christian lands. If Muslims refuse to forget the Crusades and want to continue stabbing forks into that wound, neither should we forget what they were really about.
- UK: Muslims protest Pope Benedict’s visit (tea-and-politics.blogspot.com)
- The fuss over Pope Benedict’s visit to Britain was a blessing for Catholicism. (slate.com)
- A Church in Saudi Arabia? (time.com)
- Five Arrested in Plot Against Pope Benedict (jammiewearingfool.blogspot.com)
- PopeWatch: Does Being Pope Mean Always Having to Say You’re Sorry (For Clergy Abuse)? (beliefnet.com)