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Faith/Spirituality Forum: Islalm & chrisitanity

by Catherine Frakas 25 Mar 2001

Islalm & chrisitanity QUESTION from Joe October 13, 2001 Why do many Muslims think that the use of the word Crusades is derogatory? My reading of the history of the seven Crusades is that the Church was attempting to regain, under the leadership of Pope Gregory, the Holy Lands, the Holy Lance, the True Cross and the Crown of Thorns. This land and geogrpahic area had tradtionally been occupied by Christians and was gained by Muslims via war. I realize that Christians committed atrocities against the Muslims but so did the Muslims commit atrocities against the Christians. Therefore, why do they think it acceptable to continually yell jihad against Christians and think it offfensive for President Bush to use the term crusade loosely.
I also realize that only a minority of Muslims say this, mainly the fundamentalists but I am of the belief that those of mainstream Islam are must agree for they do not speak up.
Also, again, although only a small vocal number of Muslims adhere to violence and call a christian nation like the U.S., infidels, a nation whose peoples has been worshiping the same God as the Muslims worship, but some 600 years before there was an Islam, why does the Pope not speak out and defend the faith, not for anyone particular country but these Muslim radicals charge anyone who is not a Muslim with the term infidel. I find it offensive as most Christians probably do.
For mainstream Muslims, I feel that they share in the guilt of what occurred in NY on 9/11 for they no one of stature has condemened Islamic terrorism (the U.S. State Department list 29 Foreign Terrorist Organizations and over half are based on Islamic, they kill because of some Islamic based reason. NO other terrorist organizatiosn are based on religion)
thank you
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on October 18, 2001 Dear Dr. Joe:
Muslims offended by the word Crusade is merely a political maneuver. The Crusades were launched in the middle ages because Muslims invaded Europe and the Holy Land. At the time local Kings and kingdoms did not have the ability to raise armies to fight against these invaders and thus looked to the Church for help. The Church in its compassion used its influence to raise armies to defend against these invaders.
If the Muslims or any other group were to invade Europe and invade and blackade the Holy Land everyone would have no problems raising an army to defend our allies in Europe and the Middle East. It is hypocritical for people today to be in favor of raising armies to defend Europe, the Holy Land, or ourselves, and then in the same breath criticize the Crusades.
As far as the Pope making a statement concerning the current events, he has made many statements.
Also mainstream Muslim officials HAVE DENOUNCED the terrorism.
Focus on the criminals who are terrorists and not on religion. This terrorism has NOTHING TO DO with religion in reality. It has to do with what all wars are about -- politics, real estate, power, and control.
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