It gets worse. In Germany, a protestant pastor is holding a Muslim funeral service in his church for a 17 year old who died as a jihadist fighting for the Islamic State in Syria.
Hopefully, Orthodox churches will be far less likely to follow this path of open apostasy and spiritual suicide, as the Orthodox Christian theology of church sanctification is infinitely more rigorous and unyielding than even that of Roman Catholics.
To the Orthodox Church, a church building is something far more than a mere building, and not just because of its use as a place of worship.
There is a distinct set of rites through which a church is sanctified - made holy, set apart for the sacred worship of the True God - which includes elaborate prayers at the four corners of the building, anointings with oil, sprinkling with holy water, censing of the church and faithful, the blessing of holy icons inside and often outside the church, and ultimately the placing of relics of saints into the altar.
This harks back to the church of the catacombs in Rome, where Christians celebrated the Eucharist using the tombs of the martyrs as their altars. As the altar is the place where the Mystical Sacrifice is celebrated - the mystery of Christ's incarnation, crucifixion, death and resurrection - the altar and everything surrounding it are sanctified, set apart, holy. And when the faithful gather together in worship, they further consecrate and sanctify the sacred space through their prayers.
|The consecration of an Orthodox Christian altar by bishop and clergy.|
To this day, there is a powerful sense even of what is appropriate to speak about in an Orthodox church, and what is out of bounds. One does not defile the very sanctified air of the place by allowing presentations or lectures on certain topics, or talks by non-Orthodox speakers. Obviously then, the transformation of an Orthodox temple into temporary refugee housing is unthinkable, along the lines of the atheist Bolsheviks of the 1920s and 30s converting churches into stables and latrines in their mad hatred of Jesus Christ and His Holy Church.
The Orthodox Church under Islamic subjugation during the Ottoman occupation suffered greatly, and has a long memory of its persecution under Muslim tyranny. Christians were reduced to third-class citizens, martyrdom was a frequent phenomenon, and even many of Constantinople's patriarchs were tortured and put to death. Most of Orthodoxy's churches were destroyed or converted into mosques, while, under the oppressive terms of Islam's infamous dhimma contract, the remainder were forbidden to renovate their dilapidated structures, to even display a cross, or to ring their bells. It was during these dark times that the banging of a mallet on a wooden plank, the Semantron, became the alternate call to worship. When you visit a monastery and hear this ancient sound, keep in mind that it is the echo of Muslim persecution of Orthodox Christians.
|The Martyrdom of Patriarch Gregory V of Constantinople by the Ottoman Muslims.|
This is why Eastern Christians are so aghast at Western Europe's civilizational and spiritual suicide. The story below gives anecdotal evidence as to the complete loss of any sense of Christian holiness, sacred space and worship. That these diminished Christians voluntarily defile their churches and silence their prayers out of a belief that they are following the Gospel reveals the breadth of spiritual delusion and blindness which grips the West.
This is truly an 'abomination of desolation', yet another sign of the Great Apostasy which continues to unfold all around us, and of the coming Great Tribulation. As the Lord Jesus told us:
“Therefore when you see the 'abomination of desolation', spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place” (whoever reads, let him understand)... “then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains... for then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be." (Matthew 24:15-16, 21)
"He who endures to the end will be saved." (Matthew 24:13)
Christians Told To ‘Pray In Silence… Don’t Disturb The Migrants’
by Virginia Hale, Breitbart London, June 6, 2016:
Parishioners visiting a church in Italy were told they must “pray in silence” so as not to disturb African migrants being housed there.
Some of the faithful hoping to practice their Christianity at the church of St. Anthony in Ventimiglia were surprised when they were told by Caritas volunteers they couldn’t recite the rosary and would instead have to pray in silence out of respect to migrants who are living there.
Caritas is ostensibly a Catholic charity, although much of its resources are spent on facilitating mass migration to Europe; the organisation even boasts that it contributes to and seeks to influence European Union (EU) “asylum” policies. Caritas reports that they have been distributing 600 meals a day to migrants in Ventimiglia.
After one of the female parishioners requested that the migrants be taken to another church so that she could recite the rosary, the parish priest, Don Rito, appeared and accompanied her and the other visitors to another church.
The Northern Italian town of 55,000 people has recently been overwhelmed with hundreds of migrants. More than 50 Africans have been crossing into Ventimiglia every day, hoping that from there they will be able to enter France. The town’s mayor, Enrico Ioculano, has said that this is “an untenable situation”.
Mr. Ioculano has admitted that Ventimiglia is struggling to meet the costs of the migrant influx. It was discovered that the national government will pay for less than half the town’s €220,000 bill — for unaccompanied migrants alone — accrued in the first five months of this year. Dozens of migrants in the area have also had to be vaccinated in recent days due to an outbreak of chickenpox amongst the migrant guests of St Anthony’s Church.
Breitbart London has previously reported on churches across Europe where welcoming migrants has taken precedence over Christian worship. In Germany, an evangelical church stripped out pews, the altar, and pulpit as well as all symbols of Christianity when offering it as a new home for migrants — so as to make them feel “more welcome in their new home”.