The visit of Pope Benedict XVI to the Holy Land exhibited a slide into political correctness that was already started by his predecessor. When making a “pastoral visit”, the head of the Catholic Church doesn’t need to visit a mosque, take off his shoes and say “he respects Islam”. The latter can be expressed by the Shepherd not going to other fields and just paying attention to his own flock. Presumably, other religions would not mind or even not notice if he didn’t come.
But a PhotoOp would be missed and in these days when religion is explosively mixed up with politics, actually the best strategy would be to separate the volatile substances. Instead, all kinds of mental gymnastics are being sequestered in an addled, stupid, historically wrong and even self-destructive attempt in order to accomodate the “other”.
One of the fallacies is the common denominator of the so-called “monotheistic religions”. Well, Christianity is NOT one of them. Unless, the Catholic clergy simply forgot going all the way to the top, Christians worship a Triune God. Although the values of Christianity ultimately derive from Judaism (Jesus was a Jew and very much influenced by the Rabbinic tradition at the time– a slip of memory of even the highest Church Fathers), from Paul there has been definitely a bifurcation.
Islam is so totally different in history, concept and mentality that there is no common denominator at all. Does that mean that one should persecute those who are different? Certainly not. When a religion admits various manifestations of the divinity like Hinduism, this is THEIR way of looking at it. Again, difference in mentality or outlook should not be a cause for discrimination or persecution.
Nominal Christians have killed with the most erroneous pretext of spreading the faith but this was exactly opposite the teaching of Christ. The question remains, is exterminating or at best, the degradation of the heathen a violation or fulfillment of a moral code?
If we can’t answer all these sticky questions, the best thing is to just respect the other and LEAVE THEM ALONE.
Over the past few few days, it has been astonishing to read in the Italian press over and over again that Moslems and Christians were singing at the Mass in the Jehosaphat Valley, Jerusalem, on May 13th, even up to and including a Yahoo-Italy article. 1.
Strangely enough there was virtually no announcement in English. Like most of the weird peacemaking initiatives of the Magnificat School of Music run by the Custody of the Holy Land, such tripe is concocted for internal consumption in the Boot. A rough translation of some of the sillier statements such as: “La composizione del coro (Coro Custodia di Terra Santa), spiega padre Pierucci, e’ la stessa di chi frequenta la scuola.” The compostion of the chorus (Choir of the Custody of the Holy Land) is the same that frequents the school”.
Well, I DON’T like other religions to participate in Christian service. If they want to stand by and observe, fine. But it is REALLY PERVERSE to draw them in (no one mentioned how many Moslem kids were singing for the Pope–please give us an article in Yahoo for the much larger English speaking audience).
Even worse, is the instant, widespread publication up to and including La Stampa with no one bothering to question such a mismatch. 2. An attempt was made to comment on La Stampa, but hey, the attitude is generally, don’t bother us with facts. (Orianna Fallaci, how much they need you now! Unfortunately, these days in Italy you would probably be burned as a witch instead.)
What is the point? Is this a sly prosletization, getting the other religions in by the back door and then bragging by inference, but not really stating it, that this is a step on the road to conversion? Well, what other conclusion is one supposed to derive from such a widespread news coverage of Moslem kids singing in not only a Christian service but one presided over by the Pope? Maybe the Magnificat can lend out their choir members to sing in Jewish and Moslem services as well? 3
Mixing religions is sick and perverse, based on a misunderstanding and even disrespect of the other. The only possible benefit is cheap five minutes of fame in the political correctness arena.
GOOD FENCES MAKE GOOD NEIGHBORS. Robert Frost
3. Straight from Google Videos– Jews and Moslems singing in Christian Holy Places, in the Choirs of the Magnificat Institute (Cori Magnificat della Terra Santa): http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8911030453283525685#
“Attualmente la Scuola conta 210 allievi, seguiti da 18 insegnanti: essi sono Israeliani, Palestinesi, Armeni, di religione ebraica, cristiana o musulmana. Insieme cantiamo e preghiamo nei Santuari di Terra Santa.”
Translation: “In actuality, the School counts 210 students, supervised by 18 teachers: they are Israelis, Palestinians, Armenians of the Jewish, Christian and Moslem religions. Together we sing and pray in the Sanctuaries of the Holy Land.”
The above is pretty unequivocal–Moslems and Jews singing with Christians in their services. Question: WHY are these adverts practically ALWAYS in Italian and not in English? Surely they should like to brag about their successes in bringing other religions to the Catholic altars in the most spoken language on the planet?
If you happen to be in Italy or Switzerland from Sept 17 to 26th you can see all those Jews, Christians and Moslems singing together.
You may have to bring your own cheese to put in your ears to blot out the unmusical and childish harmonizations by Pierucci, however. Bastardization of Oriental music deserves another article…
They will also making peace while they sing with the Dalakopen Choir.
La tournée avviene su invito dell’Associazione ticinese “Amici del Magnificat” e del coro “Dalakòpen” di Verghera di Samarate (Varese). Quest’ultimo sostiene il “Progetto Gerusalemme”, un’iniziativa di cooperazione internazionale nata dal desiderio di condividere le difficoltà di chi si trova a operare in un contesto drammatico ricercando le vie della pace e della fraternità