Sunday, January 30, 2011

Three Betrayals

First Betrayal
On October 27, 1986, Pope John Paul II met in Assisi, Italy with 160 religious leaders to spend a day together with fasting and pray to their various deities. These leaders of 32 Christian religious organizations and 11 non-Christian religions were joined in what was called a World Day of Prayer for Peace.

Second Betrayal
On January 24, 2002, John Paul II organized another World Day of Prayer for Peace in Assisi. Some 200 other religious leaders were present, including Roman Catholic cardinals, Muslim clerics, Jewish rabbis, Buddhists, Sikhs, Bahais, Hindus, Jains, Zoroastrians, and members of African traditional religions.

Third Betrayal
On January 1, 2011, Pope Benedict XVI announced that he would travel to Assisi in October for the anniversary of the interreligious gathering.

The expressed sentiment behind these meetings is to discourage men from using religion as a motive for conflict.
In truth, the only way this can be done is to make religion irrelevant. This attitude is a monumental betrayal of the commission given by Jesus Christ to His Apostles to make the world Christian so that men and women can win Heaven.

The past two thousand years has repeatedly demonstrated that a Christian man is many times more likely to die for his Faith than to kill for it.

Italian Catholic intellectuals are telling Pope Benedict, "Holy Father, we are afraid that relativism -- which you combat elsewhere -- will be encouraged by your presence amid representatives of all the religions of the world. We are afraid that the Catholics who today are suffering persecution for their faith in Jesus Christ in Pakistan, Iraq, North Korea, China...might find that their tormentors are comforted by the public recognition and the media spotlight that Catholicism will provide for them by organizing this new interreligious encounter."

During the first interreligious meeting in Assisi in 1986, in an attempt to reassure those who rightly objected that such an assembly of all religions could only increase confusion and encourage syncretism, the organizers resorted to this ridiculous quibble: they were not praying together, they were together to pray. In other words, it was out of the question for believers in Jesus Christ, Allah, Buddha, pray together; but if they were together, it was to pray separately!

Next October I will not pray with the Church's enemies in Assisi. Instead my thoughts and prayers will be with the Christian victims in Iraq, Pakistan, and elsewhere around the globe who suffer for their fidelity to the Son of God. May Almighty God comfort them in their trials.

Tu es Deus qui facis mirabília solus: notam fecísti in géntibus virtútem tuam.

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