Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Catholic Priest beheaded in France during Mass by Muslims linked to Islamic State

We are deep into a New Age of Christian Martyrdom under the Sword of Islam. How will we respond? 



My first reaction to this story, after the initial horror and shock, was to imagine it in a personal context.

My dear friend, Fr Thomas, an Orthodox Christian priest in Pennsylvania, recently concelebrated the Divine Liturgy with his beloved uncle, Fr. Igor, at the latter's home parish. Fr. Igor is 91 years old, and has been faithfully serving his parish for 58 years, the Church for much longer.

Pick the most venerable and faithful priest you know, and imagine he is the martyr, beheaded by a Muslim for his faith in Jesus Christ. Imagine Muslims attacking your church during the Divine Liturgy and taking hostages. Imagine them screaming "ALLAHU AKBAR!" and "DAESH!" as they shoot, stab and assault the faithful in your church.

Recall the horrific atrocities Muslims have committed against Christians and people everywhere: Beslan, Egypt, Libya, Iraq, Syria, France, Belgium, San Bernardino, Chattanooga, Indonesia, Pakistan, Nigeria, Moscow, and so on.

Muslim jihad attacks against Christian churches during the divine services can happen anywhere, anytime, including in America and Canada.  God forbid, but they almost certainly will as Islam continues its global advance.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Worshipping with Muslims?

"Our ultimate goal and divine mandate is not co-existence with Muslims but their conversion—as it is for all the children of men." —Fr. Lawrence Farley

In the below outstanding essay — which may have been prompted in part by the recent Presbyterian Church USA's (PCUSA) General Assembly, at which a Muslim Imam was invited to offer a prayer in which he denied the divinity of Jesus Christ and denigrated Christians — Fr. Lawrence Farley presents in a very gracious way the message I have been stumbling to articulate for the past seven years through my book, Facing Islam, and since early 2011 with this blog.

Fr. Lawrence's essay is one of the most clearly written pieces on Islam and Muslims from a Christian perspective I have yet encountered, and is a welcome antidote to the deeply misleading writings of Metropolitan George Khodr of Lebanon and others who promulgate the "Same God Heresy". Met. George Khodr has written:

I am completely sure that if you are a Christian and you know a lot about Islam and love what you know, your heart will embrace the Muslims around you and if you are educated, you will hold in esteem much from their religion and openly recognize the truth that is in their religion.

Alas, there is not much truth in Islam, the Muslim religion, because Allah himself and Muhammad explicitly reject the Way, the Truth and the Life, Jesus Christ, rejecting the Divinity of Christ, denying that he was even crucified and resurrected, even claiming the New Testament was corrupted to obscure the true teachings of Islam which Jesus brought (!). The Koran repeatedly calls for jihad against Christians who do not convert to Islam or at least submit to its rule. To take but one example:

Fight against those who believe not in Allah, nor in the Last Day, nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth [i.e. Islam] among the people of the Book [Jews and Christians], until they pay the jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. (Koran 9:29)

Met. George Khodr has reversed everything with his confused theology, and is extolling the "truth" of Islam as the reason for Christians to love their Muslim neighbor. This is the complete opposite of the Gospel, and is a form of "soft apostasy." It is merely a more ornately worded version of the PCUSA's simplistic "Same God Heresy."

Rather, as Fr. Lawrence Farley makes clear, Christians are called to love all people, Muslims included, because God loves them. Christ commanded us to love our neighbor, to love even our enemies. We know that God "desires all men to be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth." And as we know from the Gospel, the truth is not a book or a set of dogmas or teachings. Rather, the Truth is a Person, Jesus Christ. To the extent that we abide in Him, we will seek to share that Truth with others — including and perhaps especially with Muslims.

We do not love Muslims because we venerate their religion and long to find the beauty and truth in it. Rather, we love them because God loves them and we long to be like God. We love them because they are created in the image of God just like we are. We love them in spite of their false, pagan religion and its blatantly evil commands and beliefs. 

And how do we show our love for Muslims? By sharing the Gospel with them, by our deeds, and by our words. May the Lord deliver them from the spiritual deception and delusion inherent in Muhammad and the Koran, and lead them into the freedom and light of Jesus Christ.


Worshipping with Muslims
by Fr. Lawrence Farley, No Other Foundation, July 8, 2016:


In the current cultural debate over Islam, we sometimes meet people who rush to defend Islam and assert that Muslims and Christians both worship the same God. Sometimes they give liturgical expression to this assertion, and participate in joint Muslim-Christian worship services, in which both the Qur’an and the Bible are read. 

What are we to think of this? Can Muslims and Christians unite in worship? Is it true that they both worship the same God?

The question is deceptively complex, and since Islam post-dates the New Testament by six centuries, the New Testament cannot be expected to provide a direct answer. But the New Testament does help answer a similar question: Do pagans and Christians worship the same God? There were differences obviously, since paganism worshipped many gods and Christianity was staunchly monotheistic. But paganism did in some way dimly acknowledge that there was a supreme god of sorts, called Zeus or Jupiter (depending upon one’s geography). Could Zeus and the God of the Christians be more or less identified?

The answer (frustratingly for those who like to scream about such things on Facebook) is: Yes and No. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

William Kilpatrick: 'No Exit (from Islam)'

"Why not encourage Muslims to leave Islam? ... Islam is a religion that is held together by force. Western societies profess to be opposed to such constraints on freedom of religion. In other matters, we are quick to say that people should free themselves from such oppression. Yet very few are willing to apply this principle to Islam."


No Exit (from Islam)
by William Kilpatrick, Crisis Magazine, June 29, 2016


The world is abuzz with talk of Brexit—the British vote to leave the European Union. Britain’s reclamation of its independence is now prompting talk that other nations might exit the EU—the Netherlands, Denmark, Greece, Italy, and a dozen more. Over on this side of the Atlantic, the Brexit initiative has renewed discussion about the U.S. exiting the UN.

What you won’t hear about is any discussion of Exslam—exiting Islam. No one seems to want to suggest that it might be a good idea for Muslims to consider leaving Islam. That’s curious because Islam figures prominently in the Brexit decision. It’s no secret that the chief catalyst for Brexit is Muslim immigration. It’s for the same reason that numerous other Europeans want out of the EU. Their countries are being Islamized before their eyes and there seems little they can do about it as long as policies on borders and immigration are set by bureaucrats in Brussels. The move to leave the EU is, in large part, a move to keep Islam out of Europe.

Which prompts a question. Why not encourage Muslims to leave Islam? Islam is not only a major problem for the rest of the world, it is also a major problem for many Muslims. How many? It’s difficult to say because expressing dissatisfaction with Islam is not something that Muslims are free to do. Criticism of Islam or its prophet is a violation of sharia blasphemy laws and is punishable by prison and sometimes death.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

New-Martyr Coptic Nun Mother Athanasia Killed by Muslims in Egypt

Another Coptic Orthodox New-Martyr of the 21st Century Jihad, the Nun, Mother Athanasia

OCP Media, July 6, 2016

+MEMORY ETERNAL+

Cairo- Egypt: Today, Mother Athanasia received the Crown of Martyrdom. She was gunned down by extremists of Muslims and gave her pure soul in Hands of our Lord Jesus Christ. She was a nun in the Monastery of Great St. George in Old Cairo.

Our Lord Said to us in the Gospel ” And don’t fear those kill the body but can not kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell “(Matthew 10 :28).

She was a pure nun.

May her prayers be with us. Amen



Here is the statement from the Monastery of St George, where Mother Athanasia was a nun:

Statement from the monastery of St. George for nuns in old Cairo 

Today, 5 July 2016 Mother Athanasia of St. George Monastery for nuns in Old Cairo passed away while in a car with other nuns on Cairo Alex desert road heading to St. George monastery in Khatatba.

She was shot during a conflict that happened to take place between two conflicting parties she happened to pass by, which lead to the loss of her life immediately. We ask God to rest her soul in peace among the Wise Virgins.


Friday, July 8, 2016

Islam and the Outer Limits of Ecumenism

This is a helpful if alarming survey of Roman Catholic outreach towards Muslims, and some of the perils associated with such interfaith dialogue. I address some of these issues in my book, Facing Islam, and argue strongly against uncritical interfaith dialogue, urging instead that we follow the example of the Apostles, martyrs and saints, sharing the Gospel with Muslims in order to help lead them out of delusion and spiritual deception, that they may come to know Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit.

Some of the Vatican initiatives revealed below are shocking, such as this:
Lumen Gentium (1964) strikingly affirmed that “the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Moslems..."

This is the sort of speculative theological apostasy which paves the way for Antichrist and the Religion of the Future. No true Christian would ever make such a statement.


Islam and the Outer Limits of Ecumenism
by Howard Kainz, Crisis Magazine, May 24, 2013:


The 1964 Vatican II Decree on Ecumenism, Unitatis redintegratio, was quite clear: The newly launched ecumenical movement had as its sole goal, the reunification of Christians.  The appeals for reunification would be directed to baptized Christians, “those who invoke the Triune God, and confess Jesus as Lord and Savior, doing this not merely as individuals but as corporate bodies.” The prime interest would be in uniting with those Christian communities that possess the Apostolic Succession and preserve all seven sacraments, such as the Orthodox churches; and also other Christian bodies, such as the Church of England, whose liturgies and other usages are similar to Roman Catholic practices.

Other Vatican II documents, however, envisioned extending the outreach (not strictly ecumenical dialogue, but “interfaith dialogue”) to non-Christian religions. Lumen Gentium (1964) strikingly affirmed that “the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Moslems: these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day”; and Nostra aetate (1965), urging “mutual understanding,” emphasized that “The Church has also a high regard for the Muslims. They worship  God, who is one, living and subsistent, merciful and almighty, the Creator of heaven and earth, who has also spoken to men. They strive to submit themselves without reserve to the hidden decrees of  God, just as Abraham submitted himself to God’s plan, to whose faith Muslims eagerly link their own.”

The wording of the statement that God’s “plan of salvation” also includes Muslims, who worship the same God and “hold the faith of Abraham” seemed to “push the envelope”—as if we Christians shared a common religious heritage with Islam as well as Judaism.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

ISLAMIC TERRORISM AND WESTERN ECUMENISM

"For even if there is no war between the West and Islam in the next few years, demographic trends, reinforced by Germany’s folly in opening her doors to all refugees without examination, will lead to the Muslim dominance of the West within a generation or two. Whether that dominance is achieved through the ballot-box or through knives and bombs hardly matters. The result will be the same."


ISLAMIC TERRORISM AND WESTERN ECUMENISM
by Vladimir Moss, September 11, 2015

Pope John Paul II kisses the Koran, which calls for him to deny Jesus Christ and the Holy Trinity and submit to Islam, or be killed by Muslims.
Aristotle once said that the last virtue of a dying civilization is tolerance. Certainly, this is the only virtue – if it is a virtue - that our undoubtedly dying civilization can pride itself on. Only we like to call it “compassion”… David Cameron, Prime Minister of Great Britain, yesterday spoke about the “extraordinarily compassionate” country that Britain supposedly is. Other national leaders are weighing in to the compassion competition. Mr. (or Mrs.) Compassion in Europe appears to be Germany’s Angela Merkel. A contender for the global crown is Australia.[1]

However, tolerance is not compassion. Nor is it a virtue. Self-restraint, patience, long-suffering – these are virtues. But tolerance as the modern world understands it – that is, the refusal to rebuke or in any way fight against a vast array of false teachings – is not only not a virtue, but a serious vice. The word is not even found in the New Testament.

However, intolerance of evil teaching is both found and praised in the New Testament. 

Consider the following sayings of the Lord to the Seven Churches of Asia: - “This you have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate” (Revelation 2.6). “I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam…” (2.14). “Nevertheless, I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezabel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants” (2.20). “Because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth” (3.15).

The ordinary citizen is not called to do violence to evildoers. But he is called to oppose evil. And this is just what our society does not do. In fact, it is extremely intolerant of opposition to evil.

The usual reply to this on the part of ecumenists who pride themselves on their tolerance of evil is: “So you want to torture and kill heretics and dissenters? You want the Inquisition back?” But of course intolerance of evil by no means entails violence towards evildoers. It is the secular authorities who exercise a monopoly of violence in our society – and rightly so. The ordinary citizen is not called to do violence to evildoers.

But he is called to oppose evil. And this is just what our society does not do. In fact, it is extremely intolerant of opposition to evil. Whether we are speaking of evil doctrines (such as atheism or heresy or false religions such as Islam) or evil acts (such as homosexuality or abortion), our society condemns any open opposition to them, and those who oppose them or simply refuse to praise them or take part in them are increasingly liable to be cast into prison or lose their jobs, or at the very least be ostracized or reviled…

But now the ecumenists and liberals have come up against a serious problem. By the Providence of God, a large and steadily increasing proportion of all western states with the exception of Japan are now Muslims, whose intolerance of western tolerance of evil poses a difficult dilemma for western politicians. Since the Muslims are numerous and well-organized – too numerous and too well-organized to be repressed in the way traditional Christians are now being repressed – they have to be appeased; there is no other way. Thus the archbishop of Canterbury has even suggested allowing Muslims to live by Sharia law in Britain. In any case, the ecumenists and liberals have preached for so long that they are tolerant of all religions and faiths that they would look foolish if they began to repress Islam.

And now a fresh development has made this problem still more acute. The civil war in Syria has created four million refugees, large numbers of whom are pouring through Greece and Serbia into Western Europe, most of them headed for Germany – the richest and also, with the possible exception of Sweden, the most liberal and ecumenist state in Europe. Most Europeans do not want these refugees in such large numbers for very good reasons: they do not assimilate, but form Muslim ghettoes whose preachers openly call for the destruction of Western Christian civilization and the imposition of sharia law. Large numbers of young Western Muslims, even whole families, are joining the fearsome ISIS, which beheads and crucifies Christians, including Christian babies. Even before this recent vast new influx, western security services have been over-stretched defending their own citizens from Muslim terrorist plots. Recently David Cameron authorized the execution by drone strike of two ISIS fighters of British nationality in Syria who were plotting terrorist acts in Britain. Fears have been expressed that this recent new influx contains many ISIS warriors disguised as refugees…

Alarmed by these developments, two of the less liberal western countries – Hungary and Slovakia – have expressed the desire to receive only Christian refugees from Syria. This perfectly reasonable demand, which should be characterized not so much as pro-Christian and anti-Muslim discrimination, as an act of national self-defence, has been mocked by the more liberal countries of the Union. 

Thus the German chancellor Angela Merkel, who once said that “multi-culturalism isn’t working”, has even gone so far as to open the doors of her country to 800,000 new migrants in this year alone (one of her ministers speaks of half a million per year for the next few years). This daughter of a Lutheran pastor and former agitprop member of the East German communist party seems hell-bent on destroying what is left of her country’s Christian heritage – while condemning other countries that are less willing to open their gates to the infidels… Of course, Germany has good economic reasons for letting in Muslims. Her population is declining, she has many empty houses to fill, and the refugees will help German industry. For a country like Britain, however, whose population is rising (largely because of earlier migration) and whose social services are under serious strain even before the current invasion, the situation is quite different… And for anyone who values his nation’s Christian heritage, a vast influx of Muslims cannot be welcomed…

Sunday, July 3, 2016

First call to Islamic prayer inside Hagia Sophia in 85 years

Turkey has been moving towards formally converting Hagia Sophia into a mosque for some time now. This is a significant move in that direction.

See also: Is Russia Targeting Turkey over Hagia Sophia?


First call to Islamic prayer inside Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia in 85 years
by Robert Spencer, Jihad Watch, July 2, 2016:

The Orthodox Church has protested, but the Turks know that there is nothing whatsoever that they can do that would lose them the favor of the European Union. They know they have nothing to lose, and that Islamization is the wave of the future in Europe and the West in general. The Orthodox protests are feeble voices raised against a tidal wave, with even the Catholic Church standing mute, too afraid of harming their chimerical, self-defeating, and fruitless “dialogue” with Muslims to stand with their fellow Christians in this.

“Görmez used his appearance to describe the terrorist attack on Istanbul’s Ataturk airport, in which 44 people were killed, as part of a ‘war waged on Islam.'” Muslims murder other Muslims whom they deem to be insufficiently Islamic, and this is a “war waged on Islam.”



“First call to prayer inside Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia in 85 years,” Hürriyet Daily News, July 2, 2016:
A muezzin’s call to prayer reverberated inside the 6th century Istanbul landmark Hagia Sophia for the first time in 85 years on July 1. 
The building in the city’s historic Sultanahmet district broadcast the azan from its minarets following July 1’s Laylat al-Qadr, or night of power, marking the first revelation of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad. 
The broadcast of the morning call to prayer from within Hagia Sophia is likely to reignite the controversy over the use of the building, which was designated a museum in 1935 under Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the modern Turkisjh [sic] Republic. 
Although the prayer call has been played from Hagia Sophia’s minarets for the last four years, the muezzin has always chanted from a prayer room in the museum grounds rather than from inside the former mosque and cathedral. 

Thursday, June 30, 2016

New Priest-Martyr Rafael of El-Arish - Killed by Islamic State group in North Sinai

"The death of the Priest, which came on the third anniversary of June 30 protests that ousted former president Mohammed Morsi, was confirmed by the Coptic Church, who released a statement mourning the Priest as a martyr."



Coptic Christian Priest Killed in Egypt’s North Sinai By Gunmen
Egyptian Streets, June 30, 2016 (Many thanks to Fr Ignatius for sharing this via Facebook.):


Unidentified gunmen, believed to be members of the terrorist group Ansar Bait Al-Maqdis, shot and killed a Coptic Christian priest in Al-Arish, North Sinai on Thursday morning. 
According to a statement released by Egypt’s Ministry of Interior, the Priest of Mar Guirguis Church in Al-Arish, Rafael Moussa, was killed in the industrial part of El-Arish where he had gone to have his car checked by a mechanic. 
The death of the Priest, which came on the third anniversary of June 30 protests that ousted former president Mohammed Morsi, was confirmed by the Coptic Church, who released a statement mourning the Priest as a martyr.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Book Review: The Savvy Kafir's Intro to Islam - A Primer for Puzzled Progressives

Much needed book from the Left offers compelling presentation on Islam for Progressives.

Order from Amazon
I am well into this book now, and wanted to put up a quick review to recommend it. It's a welcome surprise to find this title, so clearly directed to a group which needs to heed its message.

Kindle Edition only $5.99 from Amazon.

The Counter Jihad camp has been unjustly tarred as a Right Wing Conservative Only movement, and a false one at that. Liberals have been very successful in portraying Muslims as victims of Christian and Conservative bigots, and Counter Jihadists as "haters" and Islamophobes, largely by logical fallacies which marginalize those who warn of the dangers from Islam (radical and otherwise).

The Savvy Kafir explodes these fallacies and lays out the case against Islam in a no-nonsense, factual, hard hitting presentation.

In spite of its obvious sense of urgency concerning the threat at hand, the book is hardly dour or tedious, but really crackles with wit and positive energy and is a brisk, entertaining read. The author not merely defends Western Civilization, but presents a compelling case for vigorously defending the liberal virtues of a multicultural society against the Islamic theological juggernaut.

This is the ideal book for Christians to share with their Liberal, Agnostic or Atheist friends, who might otherwise shut their eyes and ears.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Ramadan 2016 (so far)

A little more than a week to go in Ramadan, the Muslim holy month, and the effects of increased Muslim devotion are evident around the world.




Muslims keep Ramadan as a month of fasting in commemoration of when they believe the Koran began to be revealed to Muhammad. Many devout Muslims seek to enact the commands of the Koran and to emulate Muhammad's example during Ramadan, and that often means launching jihad attacks on non-Muslims as well as apostates from and heretics within Islam.


Islamic State spokesman Abu Mohammad al-Adnani called on Muslims to use this Ramadan to “get prepared, be ready … to make it a month of calamity everywhere for nonbelievers.”

Here is a list of recent jihad attacks: